Lil’ Kim, the rapper known for her outrageously revealing outfits and sexually charged lyrics, was charged Wednesday with lying to a grand jury about a 2001 shootout involving her entourage. The 29-year-old star, whose real name is Kimberly Jones, surrendered in federal court. She pleaded innocent and was released on $500,000 bail. Her attorney, Mel Sachs, called the charges “baseless.” She declined to comment.
Also charged in the case were her manager, Damion Butler, bodyguard Suif Jackson and a friend, Monique Dopwell. All pleaded innocent. Authorities said the shooting apparently happened as Lil’ Kim’s entourage was leaving the hip-hop radio station WQHT, or Hot 97, and the entourage of the rival rap group Capone-N-Noreaga was arriving. One man in the duo’s entourage was wounded.
The indictment said Jackson, Butler and at least one other person fired guns. Police said the shooting resulted from a feud between Jones and rap rival Foxy Brown, who appeared on a Capone-N-Noreaga album. Prosecutors said Jones refused on the day after the shooting to tell police the identities of anyone who had accompanied her to an appearance at the radio station.
On three occasions last year before a federal grand jury, she testified falsely, saying Butler was not at the radio station the day of the shooting and that she did not know Jackson, prosecutors said. Prosecutors said Lil’ Kim actually thanked Jackson in the notes to one album and expressed her affection for him. They said Lil’ Kim, Jackson and Butler had all been members of the “Jr. M.A.F.I.A” rap group, formed by the late rapper Notorious B.I.G.
Jones and Dopwell, 32, were charged with conspiracy to commit perjury, making false statements and obstructing justice. If convicted, each could face up to 30 years in prison.
If convicted, Butler, 33, and Jackson, 34, both currently incarcerated on state charges, could face up to 10 years in prison on each of their firearms charges. All the defendants could also face fines of $250,000.
Outside court, Dopwell declined to comment. Gerald McKelvey, a spokesman for Lil’ Kim and Butler, said both expect to be vindicated in court. Joseph Bianco, a lawyer for Jackson, declined to comment