Donate Now

Pras Faces Up to 20 Years in Prison After Being Convicted of International Conspiracy

MiamiFilmFestival, via Wikimedia Commons
Grammy-winning rapper Pras Michel, a former member of the hip-hop supergroup Fugees, has been
convicted of 10 criminal counts related to an international conspiracy that reached the highest levels of the US government.

Michel was found guilty of charges that included conspiracy to defraud the US, witness tampering, and acting as an unregistered agent of a foreign government.

Prosecutors accused Michel of participating in a conspiracy to help Malaysian businessman Jho Low and the Chinese government gain access to US officials, including former Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump. They alleged that Michel funneled over $800,000 of Low's money to Obama's campaign through straw donors in 2012 in exchange for a photo of himself with Obama.

While Michel testified that he never used the money at Low's direction, in 2017, prosecutors claimed that Low again turned to Michel when investigations into Low's alleged role in embezzling billions of dollars from the Malaysian sovereign wealth fund began to ramp up. They alleged that Low directed over $100 million to Michel to help push the US government, including Trump, to drop its investigation into Low.

Prosecutors also accused Michel of advocating for the extradition of a Chinese dissident, Guo Wengui, on behalf of the Chinese government. Michel denied the allegations, claiming that he only tried to help Low find an attorney in the US and told authorities about Guo because he thought he was a criminal. He also claimed that the $100 million was for a media business he was starting and wasn't from Low.

Michel could face up to 20 years in prison, although no sentencing date has been set. During the trial, he sat stoically as each count came down on Wednesday and declined to comment to reporters outside the courthouse. His attorney, David Kenner, expressed disappointment about the verdicts but remained confident that their mistrial motions would work out in their favor.

"If we do move to a sentencing hearing, I remain very confident we will certainly appeal this case," Kenner said. "This is not over."

No comments

2017 Paid in Full Entertainment, Inc.. Powered by Blogger.