Rapper NBA YoungBoy suspected of leading Utah prescription drug fraud ring

The rapper was arrested Tuesday after federal agents searched his Weber County property.

(Amy Harris | Invision/AP) NBA YoungBoy performs at the Lil' WeezyAna Fest at Champions Square in New Orleans, Aug. 25, 2017. He was arrested in Utah on Tuesday and is suspected of being behind a prescription drug fraud ring.

Rapper and Utah resident NBA YoungBoy is suspected of being behind a prescription drug ring that worked to fraudulently obtain narcotics from pharmacies in 11 different cities throughout the state, court records show.

Kentrell DeSean Gaulden, also known professionally as “YoungBoy Never Broke Again” or just “YoungBoy,” was arrested Tuesday after federal agents investigating the case executed a search warrant at a property he owns northeast of Huntsville in Weber County.

A probable cause statement explaining Gaulden’s arrest states the drug ring he is suspected of running primarily worked to fraudulently obtain codeine (a narcotic painkiller) and promethazine (an antihistamine, antipsychotic and sedative).

Under the ruse, fraudulent prescriptions were called in to various pharmacies using an “actual, valid DEA number, NPI number and other identification” for a physician, then picked up by Gaulden’s “associates,” the document states. Gaulden has been under house arrest in Utah since October 2021 as he awaits trial on federal firearms charges originating out of Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Gaulden is under investigation for 63 crimes in connection with the Utah case, including 20 counts of identity fraud, 20 counts of forgery and 20 counts of illegally procuring or attempting to procure prescription drugs. He is also suspected of marijuana possession; possession of a gun by a restricted person; and a “pattern of unlawful activity.”

Formal charges had not been filed against Gaulden as of Thursday morning, court records indicated.

Investigators suspect Gaulden or his associates fraudulently used the identities of two doctors in Provo to call in the fake prescriptions to pharmacies in Cottonwood Heights, Farmington, Hyrum, Lehi, Logan, Midvale, North Logan, Riverton, Roy, Smithfield and Tremonton.

Two women identified as Gaulden’s associates were also arrested when investigators say they tried to pick up a fraudulent prescription at a Smithfield pharmacy while driving a Chevy Tahoe registered to Gaulden. The probable cause statement notes the same vehicle seemed to be featured in one of Gaulden’s music videos, as it was the same color and had a matching dent and matching rims.

The document states Gaulden “is consistently rapping about shooting and killing people, using drugs and having a strong dislike for law enforcement.” He can be seen with guns and “smoking what appears to be marijuana rolled cigarettes” in many of his videos, “even recent videos as of the beginning of 2024″ — made while he was under house arrest.

The rapper’s Louisiana charges stem from 2020 allegations that he brandished weapons while filming a music video in Baton Rouge.

Agents with the FBI, Homeland Security and the Secret Service participated in the Tuesday search, as well as the Weber County Sheriff’s Office, Cache County Sheriff’s Office, Ogden police, Layton SWAT and drug task forces from Box Elder and Cache/Rich counties, according to a news release.

As of Thursday, Gaulden remained held without the option of bail in Cache County jail, where he was booked after his Tuesday arrest.