G-Unit member Tony Yayo is disappointed to see friend and recording partner Max B go to jail. Max, born Charles Wingate, was found guilty of manslaughter, as well as eight other charges, last week in New Jersey. His sentencing is July 31.
Yayo said the trial went south before it even started, blaming his friend's downfall on a January video blog, in which Max and his lawyer, Gerald M. Saluti, spoke about the case for more than six minutes. The two also were part of subsequent Internet interviews.
"It's an unfortunate thing that happened to Max B," Yayo told us. "He just had a kid. I f--- with Max. I f--- with French [Montana]. I think he had bad representation with his lawyer. What lawyer do you know that's gonna do a blog with you? That's when I think everything got messed up. That blog f---ed it up. You know I'm always in trouble. When I have a case, I don't do no press, nothing. If you don't got a lawyer there telling you, 'Shut the f--- up,' you're f---ed up. The lawyer was wack. Your lawyer wants to sit there and do a blog with you? [Max's] lawyer may not have been the one to handle a homicide."
Saluti met Max a couple of years ago as part of the legal team Jim Jones provided for Max, who is an estranged member of Jones' Byrd Gang. Saluti eventually took the reins and said he would rep B for free.
The lawyer fumed when he was told of Yayo's comments.
"My first comment is, who the hell is Tony Yayo and what law school did he go to?" Saluti said. "Everything I do, I do for a reason. And where were all these people in support of Max — like Tony Yayo and all these other people that have something to say — when he was out there by himself facing all of these charges? Nowhere to be seen. Now everyone has an opinion about it. Everyone wants to help Max. I saw people were bustin' my chops about blogging while we were waiting for a verdict in this case ... on my Twitter. Do people actually think I touch my own Twitter and it's not my assistant? You think I have time to Twitter?
"What year did Yayo graduate from law school is my question," Saluti added. "How many cases has he tried to verdict? It's ridiculous. People are so ready to kick a guy when he's down. Not that I'm saying Max and I are down, because we damn sure aren't done fighting this."
In the wake of Max's conviction, Saluti appeared in an online video and read a letter from his client thanking fans for their support. Max also said in his letter he wouldn't trade Saluti for the world, even if the late, great Johnnie Cochran "rose from the dead." The attorney said he's in the middle of filing a motion to get the case thrown out altogether.
"My daughter came to me at the end of the case, and she said, 'Daddy, you lost? But you worked so hard on that case. You don't lose. How could you lose?' " Saluti recalled. "And I told her, 'That's just the way God wants it right now.' That was my answer, and that's still my answer. Max is supposed to be the godfather to my 1-year-old, who we were gonna baptize after the trial. And I said to him after the trial, 'Water is not touching that kid's head until you are out the hole.' And I don't expect that to be 30 years from now. He was strong, you have to admit. I think I was more upset than he was. I really do.
"I went and saw Max in jail the next day, after the verdict, and he wrote a letter to his fans specifically, and when I read it, I choked back tears," the lawyer added. "I love that boy. I held his son in my arms. I have pictures of his son and my son together."
Authorities claim Max was part of a conspiracy to rob two men of around $30,000 two years ago.