John Wilson, better known as "Tommy Hill"
and member of popular Philadelphia group R.A.M. Squad, pleaded guilty to cocaine
charges yesterday (June 3) and is cooperating with federal authorities.
"I did what I did," Wilson told the
judge yesterday before pleading guilty. "I know it was wrong. I just want
to get this behind me and move on with my life."
Hill was busted in December of 2003 and charged
with selling 51 grams of crack to a cooperating government witness who was wired
with a recording device provided by the FBI. The FBI also supplied the money
for the drug purchase, which took place last in a fast-food parking lot.
Wilson is facing a minimum of 10 years. Prosecutors
will seek to reduce his sentence, based on the level of cooperation he provides.
Hill revealed two months ago that the FBI was
seeking information from him in relation to former Philadelphia mob boss "Skinny"
Joey Merlino and Shamsud-din Ali, a Muslim cleric accused of corruption.
He claimed an unknown rapper provided the information
that led to his arrest and vowed that he would not cooperate with federal officials.
Court records indicated otherwise and stated
that Wilson "agrees to cooperate fully and truthfully with the government."
The nature of information he is providing is not known.
Authorities have been investigating R.A.M. Squad
since the late 1990’s and claim there is no difference between the rap group
and a drug gang of the same name. R.A.M. stands for "Richard Allen Mob,"
named after the Philadelphia housing complex where Wilson and other group members
Another man, Gerald "Bubby" Thomas,
also from the Richard Allen housing complex, was indicted on drug conspiracy
charges last month. The Thomas investigation led authorities to tap Ali’s phone
and agents subsequently received permission to bug Ali’s home and cellphone.
Those wiretaps spawned another corruption investigation
and ultimately led to Mayor John Street’s office being bugged.
According to investigators, the probe does not
implicate that city officials were involved in dealing drugs.
Ali’s wife Faridah and her children Azheem Spicer
and Lakiha Spicer were indicted yesterday, but Ali himself has yet to be charged
with a crime.