Lil' Kim Convicted of Perjury
March 17, 2005
By Larry Neumeister, Associated Press Writer
NEW YORK (AP) -- Rap diva Lil' Kim was convicted Thursday of lying to a federal grand jury about a shooting outside a radio station.
Lil' Kim and her assistant were both convicted of perjury and conspiracy but acquitted of obstruction of justice. The defendants had faced up to 30 years in prison if convicted of all the charges.
The 29-year-old former sidekick of the late Notorious B.I.G., known for her revealing outfits and raunchy raps, testified that she did not notice two close friends at the scene of the 2001 shootout -- her manager, Damion Butler, and Suif "Gutta" Jackson.
Both men have since pleaded guilty to gun charges. Witnesses at the trial included Antoine "Banger" Spain and James "Lil' Cease" Lloyd, who once teamed with Lil' Kim in the group Junior M.A.F.I.A. They testified that Butler and Jackson were at WQHT -- the rap station known as Hot 97 -- with Lil' Kim.
The jury also saw security photos taken at the station showing Butler opening a door for Lil' Kim.
Defense lawyer Mel Sachs argued that Lil' Kim had no reason to protect Butler and Jackson because she had already eliminated them from her life.
Both defendants shook their heads as the verdicts were delivered. Lil' Kim's supporters broke out in sobs.
The shootout occurred when Lil' Kim's entourage crossed paths with a rival rap group, Capone-N-Noreaga. One man was injured as more than two dozen rounds were fired on the sidewalk.