Federal prosecutors in New York serving on the Fetty Wap drug trafficking case are asking for the New Jersey rapper to receive a prison sentence of “between 87 and 108 months” after the rapper pleaded guilty to conspiracy in August 2022, according to documents obtained by The FADER. News of the prosecutor’s request was first reported by TMZ.
In the documents, prosecutors cite Fetty’s 2014 hit “Trap Queen” in their request for a longer sentence, claiming the rapper told the government that the song was inspired by his past participation in drug trafficking, for which he was never charged, tried, or convicted. “[Fetty Wap] admitted to the Probation Department that his hit song ‘Trap Queen,’ which was released in 2014, was an ‘ode to a former girlfriend who assisted him a cocaine base distribution operation in Patterson, New Jersey.’ The defendant was never held accountable for that conduct, but that does not diminish its significance.”
The official music video for “Trap Queen” is attached in the sentencing document as an exhibit; the government argues that the video’s cast and setting is an example of Fetty Wap glamorizing the drug trade. “In the official video for ‘Trap Queen,’ the defendant also enlisted young children who stood behind him while he idealized selling drugs,” the prosecution writes.
“Sweet Yamz,” Fetty Wap’s viral 2022 track, is also cited as an example of Fetty Wap’s alleged idealization of the drug trade. “Yams,” the government argues, “is code for grams of narcotics, and making significant money (i.e., ‘bands’) from that illegal trade.”
Fetty Wap was arrested in October 2021 on his way to perform at Rolling Loud New York. He was labeled by prosecutors as “a kilogram-level redistributor for the trafficking organization” that “distributed more than 100 kilograms of cocaine, heroin, fentanyl, and crack cocaine across Long Island and New Jersey.” He has asked for five years in prison, the minimum sentence, but prosecutors argue that the severity of the crime demands a harsher penalty.
In April, two Democratic representatives introduced the RAP Act, a bill that would clamp down on the ability for prosecutors to use rap lyrics as evidence in criminal trials. New York’s Senate passed a state-level bill in May 2022, though the legislation has not yet been approved in the New York Assembly.
The FADER has reached out Fetty Wap’s representative for comment.