The half-brother of Cash Money Records co-founders Bryan “Birdman” Williams and Ronald “Slim” Williams, who has been incarcerated for over two decades, has recently been released from jail.
Terrance “Gangsta” Williams was sentenced to a life sentence after pleading guilty to federal charges of dealing heroin and plotting to murder dealers in New York.
According to NOLA.com, rumors say Gangsta was the big money who initially bankrolled the meteoric rise of Cash Money Records. He also was allegedly a part of a Louisiana crew called the “Hot Boys,” a name familiar to the Hip-Hop heads.
In 1997, Lil Wayne, Turk, Juvenile, and Christopher “B.G.” Dorsey adopted that tag as a group name for a platinum-selling feature collective within the label that put out songs like “The Block is Hot,” “Bling Bling” and “I Need a Hot Girl.”
In a sworn guilty plea prepared by his former lawyer Arthur “Buddy” Lemann III, Gangsta apparently says he “purchased cars in other persons’ names, told others about a substantial cash investment in a recording company, and had no legitimate source of income.”
However, there is also a handwritten note next to this statement from the third Williams brother saying, “Williams disagrees,” so it is unclear if he did drop an alleged $100,000 into the pot to get Cash Money Records ready for the 99 and 2000s before getting locked up.
In 1998, Gangsta pleaded guilty to engaging in a continuing criminal enterprise and solicitation for murder. The FBI caught him in a scheme to kill some drug dealers from New York in his hometown of New Orleans.
Had he not been caught on a wire and the feds didn’t intercept a package of heroin critical to the murder, Gangsta may have enjoyed some of the success of the entertainment company responsible for Drake, Nicki Minaj, and Young Thug.
According to Federal Bureau of Prisons records, he was released on Jan. 3rd. However, no one knows “why.”
When asked to confirm his release, his attorney Townsend Myers stated that his client received a reduced sentence. Another person not talking is the Interim U.S. Attorney Duane Evans’ office, who declined to comment but stated Judge Lemelle’s ordered the records to be sealed.
According to court records, Williams started cooperating with the government after his arrest. Birdman’s brother gave “substantial assistance” to the government and helped them secure guilty pleas from co-defendants.
“The defendant also provided information to the state authorities regarding a number of murders and urged persons who had witnessed murders to come forward as witnesses and contact the others,” prosecutors wrote.
One of the co-defendants said Williams murdered two of the people: Ishmael Fernandez, a 26-year-old Avondale Shipyards worker, and 19-year-old Colon Cains, who was shot dead in a Chevy Corsica on LaSalle Street.
Gangsta defended himself and said while he didn’t kill the people, he saw who did. He wrote letters to the judge and the Orleans Parish district attorney to confess to witnessing the murders and named the people who allegedly killed them.
He also wrote in these letters that prosecutors agreed to support a sentence reduction for him because he helped them arrest a correctional officer.