Music Execs, Lawyer Back Jimmy Henchmen; Shoot Down NY Daily News Story
(AllHipHop News) A number of music industry executives have come out in support of manager James Rosemond, after an article in the New York Daily News ran today (September 13th), accusing him of cooperating with the government in a variety of cases. The New York Daily News reported that Rosemond served as an informant in at least three cases since the mid-1990's including one, in which he received leniency for a Los Angeles gun case.People who were actually at his sentencing have come forward with statements to clear Rosemond of the allegations contained in The Daily News' piece. "I was inside the courtroom at Jimmy Rosemond's sentencing and nothing that the NY Daily News alleges took place," former Haitian Presidential candidate Wyclef Jean told AllHipHop.com. "Looking from the outside within, the way the judge and prosecutor were beating on this man, if at any time there was such cooperation it would have been made crystal clear in the courtroom. I speak as a witness that was in the courtroom that day and it deeply saddens me that whenever we do the right thing, people want to put us on the wrong path." Representatives for Rosemond said that the rapper has suffered from years of bad press, since rapper Tupac Shakur name checked him on the songs "Against All Odds" and "Hit 'Em Up."On the songs, Shakur claimed Henchmen was a co-conspirator in his 1994 shooting in front of The Quad recording studio in New York, while a number of top rappers were present, including Notorious B.I.G., Lil Cease, Andre Harrell and Sean "Diddy" Combs.In May of 2008, the Los Angeles Times released explosive documents claiming to prove an undeniable link between Shakur's 1994 shooting and Jimmy Rosemond, as well as Sean "Diddy" Combs.Both Rosemond and Combs vehemently denied the reports, and it was later learned that the information was based off fake documents forged by an incarcerated con man named David Sabatino.The L.A. Times was forced to retract the story.Ironically, today's story in the New York Daily News coincides marks the 14-year anniversary of Shakur's death. The rapper was gunned down on the Las Vegas Strip on September 6th, 1996 and died from his wounds on September 13th. Rosemond's lawyer, Jeffrey Lichtman, also denied the claims in The New York Daily News and said that his client had never signed any cooperation agreement with the state of federal government."The article in today's New York Daily News about Jimmy Rosemond is nothing short of a targeted assassination attempt by the government, with an assist from their favorite daily newspaper," Lichtman told AllHipHop.com in a statement. "Due to the government's inability to convict Jimmy in a court of law, they have stooped to trying to get him lynched in the street," Lichtman fumed. "We are weighing our legal options at this time but we can say in no uncertain terms: Jimmy is not and has never cooperated with law enforcement. If you noticed the article never stated one named person that Mr. Rosemond allegedly informed upon. Any suggestion otherwise is a damnable, actionable lie." Aaliyah's uncle Barry Hankerson, a veteran music executive and owner of Blackground Records was also in court with Rosemond, where he testified as a character witness on his behalf. "I attended the sentencing hearing for Jimmy in the capacity of a character witness and in the courtroom I observed a judge that was moved by the number of people that had experienced Jimmy over time, particularly me who worked very closely with him. Jimmy is clearly a man that impacted the court by the way he lived. At one point during the sentencing the judge responded that the fact that everyone was there on Jimmy's behalf was impressive and Jimmy deserved leniency in his sentencing. It was obvious to all of us as observers that the sentence was not handed down based upon reports or intrinsic findings but based upon the obvious character and rehabilitation that Jimmy portrayed through his friends, associates and family members." Hip-Hop pioneer Fab 5 Freddy also vouched for Rosemond and shot down the reports, which he "vividly remembered" because an R&B legend also appeared in court to support Rosemond. "I was there at Jimmy's sentencing hearing as a character witness and nothing like what is purported in the New York Daily News actually transpired in the courtroom," Fab 5 Freddy said. "I vividly remember one of the highlights that day was when Gladys Knight appeared on Jimmy's behalf and he had a huge showing of support. At one stage the prosecutor was trying to be aggressive because of contempt that Jimmy had won other cases and the judge had to scold her for being too aggressive. It was a memorable moment. Jimmy finished the remaining term and has since been on the right path. This seems like a complete smear job and what the Daily News did resembles what was done to him at the Los Angeles Times which resulted in the firing of a Pulitzer Prize-winning writer and a retraction from the newspaper."Eric B. of the legendary Hip-Hop group Eric B. & Rakim also said that the Daily News' story about Rosemond ever cooperating with the government was full of inaccuracies. "I was there from day one for Jimmy and as one that was at his sentencing I can say that it was never mentioned in court that he cooperated with the state," Eric B. stated. "In fact, the prosecutor said that the courts had let Jimmy slip through the cracks. There was unequivocally never any dialogue in the court sentencing that even remotely resembles what was written in the Daily News article and the story clearly didn't point to any evidence. How do you have a case with no evidence? It just doesn't add up."Musician, producer and songwriter Bryce Wilson also expressed support for Rosemond, who manages the career of Compton rapper The Game, Sheek Louch, Mario Winans, Blood Raw, Rich Boy and others."Absolutely none of this was ever brought up in the courtroom and what the Daily News asserts is absurd," Wilson stated.