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Larry Hoover: Ex-gang leader championed by Kanye West and Drake renounces Gangster Disciples

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Larry Hoover, the former gang leader who has been supported by Kanye West and Drake, has renounced his old gang, Gangster Disciples.

Last year, Hoover – who is currently serving a life setence in Colorado’s federal supermax prison – unsuccessfully attempted to have his sentenced reduced under the First Step Act, a law signed by Donald Trump in 2018.

However, he is now attempting again to undo his federal life sentence.

In a pair of letters addressed to a US District Judge and the public, Hoover claimed that he is “no longer the Larry Hoover people sometimes talk about, or he who is written about in the papers, or the crime figure described by the government”.

He claimed he was “anecdotally” aware that “some misguided people” had used him as a symbol, adding that he wished “this were not so”.

“Regardless, these people are apart from me and do what they do with zero encouragement or direction from me,” he wrote. “To be clear, if I had any ability to influence them, I’d ask that they’d forget me and forsake the gang life forever.”

He wrote that he “was lost in an enduring pattern of criminality those many years ago”, during his period of criminality, adding that he had “long since renounced my association with any and all criminal organisations and their membership”.

“I am no longer a member, leader, or even an elder statesman of the Gangster Disciples,” Hoover wrote. “I want nothing to do with it now and forever.”

Federal prosecuters have claimed that Hoover has continued to orchestrate gang activity in some capacity while imprisoned, and have stated that they believe he would attempt to reclaim his position as the gang’s leader if released.

In July 2020, Chicago’s top federal prosecutor, US Attorney John Lausch, told the judge that it would be a “miscarriage of justice to reduce [Hoover’s] sentence in any way, shape or form”.

Hoover is currently serving six life sentences for a range of crimes, including murder, conspiracy and extortion.

Last December, Kanye West and Drake featured at a benefit concert in Los Angeles, intended to advocate for Hoover’s release from prison.

“Larry Hoover brought me and Drake together. That man created peace. Larry Hoover called that from the prison, and everybody was happy,” West later said.

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