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Sentencing for Convicted Rapper

Sunday, March 20, 2005

(SNN) Rapper Lil’ Kim was handed four guilty verdicts in a New York courtroom yesterday. Although she was acquitted of her most serious charges, obstruction of justice, she could end up with prison time.

For each charge of rapping, Lil' Kim could receive up to five years.

For each charge of rapping, Lil' Kim could receive up to five years. It is conceivable that the 29 year old could be 50 years old by the time she finishes her prison sentence. Kim will be sentenced by Judge Gerard Lynch. It seems unlikely that Judge Lynch will give Lil’ Kim anything like the 20 years possible.

High profile attorney David Scharf kept a close eye on Lil' Kim during her trial, and believed the rapper was in trouble before the trial even got started. "The fact that [during her earlier grand jury testimony] she got up and denied meeting people when there were pictures of her with those people [put her] in a difficult situation," he said.

Lil Cease displayed a great amount of legal acumen

In addition to using Kim’s own words against her, prosecutors also relied on testimony from people such as former co-manager Damion Butler and Suif "Gutta" Jackson, a member of her former youth organization Junior M.A.F.I.A, who cooperated as part of a plea bargain.

Despite Lil’ Kim’s problems with the law, one of her contemporaries, Lil Cease, displayed a great amount of legal acumen. "When they subpoena you, you go to court or they take your ass to jail. It's just that simple," said fellow Junior M.A.F.I.A. member, who was also a key witness for the prosecution. Cease said he agrees with Scharf, who believes Kim should've tried working out a plea deal rather than risking it all with a trial. If Lil' Cease could have served as legal counsel for Kim, the trial might have gone quite differently.

The legal team of Cease and Scharf expect Kim will be sentenced to five to seven and a half years, but they expect an appeal. "I don't see any great appellate grounds for it," he said, "but an appeal will perhaps give her negotiating leverage… in exchange for a post-verdict, post-sentencing plea bargain, where she will have to do less time." However, Cease has said that he refuses to represent anyone who has “forgotten what BIG taught us”.

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