Tsu Surf has entered a guilty plea in a RICO case that could result in the renowned battle rapper serving up to 30-years in prison.
On Thursday (April 27), Surf, born Rahjon Cox, appeared in front of a judge via video and plead guilty to racketeering conspiracy and possessing firearms and ammunition as a convicted felon. The copped racketeering conspiracy charge carries a maximum of 20 years in prison, while the firearms charge comes with a maximum sentence of 10 years. Each count is also punishable by a fine of up to $250,000. It’s unclear whether each sentence will be served consecutively or concurrently upon Cox’s sentencing, which is scheduled for Sept. 12, 2023.
According to authorities, the rapper is accused of being a leading member in the Rollin’ 60s Neighborhood Crips gang, which operated out of the rapper’s hometown of Newark, N.J. and its surrounding areas. In addition to being a high-ranking member in the alleged criminal organization, Cox is accused of shooting at a rival gang member in 2017 as a convicted felon in possession of two loaded firearms. He was arrested for the incident in 2019. The former URL champion’s leadership role is believed to have begun in 2015 and continued until September 2022, weeks prior to his arrest.
After being included in an indictment handed down by a New Jersey grand jury in October 2022, Cox was taken into custody following a standoff with police at a home in Jersey City, N.J. The 33-year-old initially barricaded himself inside the home with a woman and refused to surrender. However, following a negotiation with authorities, Cox surrendered and was detained without incident.
At the time of Cox’s arrest, the rapper’s manager released a statement to Fox 5 New York’s Lisa Evers regarding their client’s next steps in preparing to fight against the allegations levied against him.
“He is in good spirits and preparing to deal with a federal law enforcement matter,” Qua Bellamy expressed to Evers. “He says he’s also making plans to take care of his family and the business associates who depend on him. Qua also says that Tsu does not know the severity of the situation yet, but is preparing for the worst and praying for the best.”
Tsu Surf originally maintained his innocence and entered a not guilty plea in October 2023. He is best known for his popularity as a battle rapper and released several studio albums. The most recent LP, Disparu, dropped in November 2022 after his incarceration.