(AllHipHop News) Ronald “Ra Diggs” Herron is currently on trial in Brooklyn Federal Court for murder, drug dealing and racketeering charges. The rapper attempted to convince the jury this week that he is not the wealthy, drug dealing gang leader he talks about in his music.
On Wednesday the defense team called fellow Murda Team group member Uncle Murda to testify on Herron’s behalf. Murda (born Leonard Grant) revoked his 5th amendment right against self-incrimination in order to take the stand.
While the prosecution attempted to paint Herron as a drug kingpin that terrorized the Gowanus Housing Projects with “armed henchmen,” Murda stated the defendant was actually not well off financially and just presented that gangster persona in his music.
“Fair to say we all might have male groupies that hang around,” testified Murda when asked about the henchmen.
“Sometimes we exaggerate things to sound like the best thing out there,” he added when the prosecutor questioned him about lyrics in song that claimed Murda refused to see a doctor after a bullet grazed him in the head in 2008.
Murda also said Herron had to drive his girlfriend’s car to get around and could not afford studio time to record. They also spent $3,000 to $5,000 a night in bottle service at clubs to keep up the appearance of being rich rappers.
Herron took the stand on Thursday. He told the court he left his life of crime in the past and turned to rap music.
“I spent a lot of time in isolation,” testified Herron. “I went through a whole retrospective process. I changed radically.”
Music videos presented at the trial that included references to violent acts were merely “hyperbole” stated Herron.
One particular image of Herron at a hospital was presented by the prosecution as evidence that the alleged leader of the Murderous Mad Dogs Bloods faction was warning his eventual victim. In the clip Herron says, “See you at a cemetery near you, man.”
Herron claimed the statement was just an ad-lib that was not directed at any particular person. He is accused of killing Frederick Brooks, Richard Russo and Victor Zapata as well as running a narcotics organization.