The judge who made the decision to exclude should be removed, the rapper should be released from custody

ATLANTA, Georgia (Atlanta News First) – An attorney for acclaimed rapper Young Thug, who is at the center of one of the most watched criminal trials in the country, is appealing to the judge who will rule on whether to recuse the judge overseeing the trial to set aside that decision and release his client from custody.

In a more than 200-page motion, attorney Brian Steel asked Judge Rachel Krause to recuse herself from deciding whether Superior Court Judge Ural Glanville should be removed from overseeing the YSL trial.

“This motion is also timely in the context of Judge Krause’s recusement based on the fact that she serves on the Fulton County Superior Court with Judge Glanville and that in April 2024, Judge Glanville contributed $2,000 to Judge Krause’s re-election campaign,” the motion reads.

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Steel’s motion calls for his client, a rapper whose real name is Jeffery Williams, to be released from prison and “cleared of all charges based on abuse of prosecutorial and judicial authority.”

The rapper’s attorney is also seeking the exclusion of Adriane Love and Simone Hylton, the two lead prosecutors in the case.


Glanville recently suspended the hearing indefinitely until a decision on recusal was made. Steel filed a motion to have Glanville recused.

At the center of the latest trial delay is a June 10, 2024, ex parte meeting between Glanville, two Fulton County prosecutors, the prosecution’s star witness, Kenneth Copeland (also known as Woody or Lil’ Woody), and his deputy, Kayla Bumpus. The legal term ex parte, translated from Latin as “out of party,” refers to a decision made by a judge without all parties to the dispute having to be present.

Glanville released the schedule and transcript of the meeting that led to Steel being charged with contempt of court that same day.

Steel and Young Thug’s other attorney, Keith Adams, has filed multiple motions for a mistrial, as have attorneys for some of the other defendants in the case. Glanville has denied all repeated motions, as well as motions by Steel and other attorneys to recuse themselves from the case, until recently.

Jury selection for the trial took longer than any in Georgia history, and the witness testimony alone is likely to surpass state records. Both records were set by the Atlanta Public Schools teacher scandal and trial in 2014-15.

Prosecutors are trying to show that YSL, or Young Slime Life, is a criminal street gang responsible for numerous crimes. Defense attorneys say YSL is not a gang, but simply the name of the Young Stoner Life record label.

Young Thug faces eight criminal charges under a federal law that was originally enacted to combat organized crime. Georgia is one of 33 states with its own RICO law, but in the Peach State, alleged criminal enterprises don’t have to exist as long as the federal law remains in effect.

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