Vic Mensa has gone from drug bust to cannabis brand in a few short months. In January, the Chicago rapper was arrested for possessing LSD and magic mushrooms. In June, Mensa pleaded guilty. In August, he announced the launch of 93 Boyz in Illinois.
Let’s break it down:
Act 1: The Bust
Returning from a trip to Africa on January 15, Mensa was stopped and searched at Dulles International Airport in Washington, DC. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) found the 28-year-old Chicago rapper in possession of LSD and psilocybin mushroom products. "Officers discovered about 41 grams of liquid Lysergic Acid Diethylamide (LSD), about 124 grams of Psilocybin capsules, 178 grams of Psilocybin gummies,and six grams of Psilocybin mushrooms concealed inside Mensa’s luggage," according to a CBP press release:
Mensa, whose full name is Victor Mensah, was charged with felony narcotics possession and taken into custody. He'd been traveling with Chance the Rapper in Ghana prior to returning to the U.S.
Vic Mensa: “Before I ever sold a rap, I sold an eighth.”
Act 2: The Plea
On June 27, TMZ reported Mensa pleaded guilty to “one count of possession of a Schedule III controlled substance, which is a Class 1 misdemeanor.” Mushrooms and LSD are both Schedule I drugs, not Schedule III. Schedule I drugs are the most restricted.
“As part of the plea deal he got 12 months in jail, but that was suspended - meaning instead of serving it behind bars, he'll have a year of unsupervised probation. Vic will also have to take a substance abuse assessment, perform 25 hours of community service and pay a $1k fine. BTW, he'll get 50% off that fine if he successfully completes the other probation terms.”
"Tax revenue generated from cannabis should be used as reparations to the communities most impacted by the War on Drugs."
Act 3: The Brand
On August 11, Forbes reported Mensa had launched the cannabis company 93 Boyz in Illinois. “Before I ever sold a rap, I sold an eighth,” he says. “I think cannabis should be federally legal because it’s a literal plant from the earth with enormous healing capabilities. All plant medicine should be decriminalized.” The latter comment tips his hand about psychedelics, but he doesn’t talk about them or his arrest.
Mensa calls 93 Boyz the “first Black-owned [cannabis] brand in Illinois stores when we dropped,” adding: “I believe the tax revenue generated from cannabis should be used as reparations to the communities most impacted by the War on Drugs - like literal cash payment reparations, subsidized housing, education, everything.”
93 Boyz products - flower, pre-rolls and vape oil cartridges - will be available at Chicago-area pot shops to start.
Mensa received a Grammy nomination in 2016 for "All Day" (Best Rap Song). He's one of numerous writers of the song which was recorded by Kanye West (No. 15, 2015). He also has a rock band called 93 Punx.