Rap mogul Kareem “Biggs” Burke, one of the co-founders of Roc-A-Fella Records, was among 43 people arrested today in a massive marijuana wholesale ring based in New York and Florida. The 18-month investigation into the ring resulted in nearly $2 million in seized profits and 360 pounds of marijuana. Along with Burke, another notable bust was Matthew Stang, a writer and senior ad rep at High Times magazine. "In the case of the High Times employee, it’s a case of art imitiating real life," said Jim Hayes special agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations for Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Burke was caught on a wiretap discussing "grow houses" with the ringleader, Geovanny “Manny” Rodriguez Perez, who police said used intimidation to create a super drug distribution network that has controlled the marijuana market in NYC. Burke founded Rock-A-Fella Records with Jay-Z and Damon Dash in 1996, initially as an independent outlet for Jay-Z's first record.