Memphis rapper Yo Gotti will now be short $6.6million.
The “Rake It Up” rapper must pay $6.6 million to a talent manager in Winston-Salem for failing to sign a contract allowing the release of a song Yo Gotti contributed a verse to, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.
Yo Gotti also allegedly went behind the manager’s back in an attempt to lure away a singer. On Tuesday (May 28), Judge Todd Burke found that Yo Gotti, whose given name is Mario Mims, engaged in “unfair and deceptive trade practices” in getting Michael Terry to pay him $20,000 for the verse on a track by Terry’s artist, Young Fletcher, whose given name is Lamont Fletcher.
The court order was a default written judgment against the 38-year-old rapper. Judge Burke came to the conclusion that the actual damages were $2.2 million, and then he tripled that amount to $6.6 million due to the fact that Yo Gotti engaged in unfair and deceptive trade practices.
The nonjury trial was presided over by Judge Burke Tuesday morning in Forsyth Superior Court; Yo Gotti didn’t attend, not did he or his company, Collective Music Group, send lawyers for the hearing, resulting in the default judgment.
According to two affidavits that were submitted into evidence by Terry’s attorney, Clarke Dummit, Yo Gotti agreed to do something that’s fairly common in the music industry-get paid for a verse on an upcoming artist’s song as a way of jump-starting that artist into mainstream success.
However, the “jump-starting” halted because Yo Gotti didn’t sign what’s known as a “side artist agreement,” which would give Young Fletcher the green light to release his song with Yo Gotti’s verse on it to streaming services such Apple Music and Youtube.
Terry and his artist made several attempts to contact the Memphis rapper regarding the contract, to no avail.
“At some point during this time period, Yo Gotti contacted Young Fletcher directly and privately offered him $150,000 to leave my label and join his instead,” Terry said in his affidavit. “Young Fletcher turned down the offer.”
To add insult to injury, according to the affidavits and Burke’s order, Yo Gotti recorded a song with the verse he did for Young Fletcher “so it would intentionally make the plaintiff look like he was copying Yo Gotti.”
“Yo Gotti’s actions were willful and malicious and caused actual injury to the Plaintiffs,” Burke said in his order.
“Yo Gotti probably thought, ‘Oh, these small-town North Carolina dudes can’t do nothing to me, but he was sorely mistaken,” Terry said.
Terry also said that the court ordered judgment isn’t the end. “He might want to pick up the phone now because I’m coming after the cars and the Bel Air mansion.”