In an in-depth interview with Sway & King Tech's Wake Up Show, Freeway Ricky Ross spoke candidly about his life, including details on his long career as a drug kingpin, the relationship between Los Angeles Crips and Bloods, and of course, his issues with rapper Rick Ross, who he believes stole his name.
The former drug lord claimed that by his incarceration in 1996, $600 million had passed through his hands in some form, and that he'd sometimes make $3 million in one day. He explained that his nonchalant attitude towards the money was sometimes misconstrued as greed.
"Once [the money] starts coming, you're not really doing anything but giving orders," he told the radio show. "I didn't see drugs, I didn't see money. All I did was numbers and spend money…You pick up the phone and a guy says, 'Hey man, I need 20 keys.' So you figure okay I'm gonna make $200,000 off of that. [So I'd say to someone else], 'Hey kid, go deliver these 20 keys to him.'"
He made clear that he takes full responsibility for his actions, but does not agree with the idea that his involvement in drug trafficking led to violence in his neighborhood. "[The courts] wanted to relate the drugs to the violence but that wasn't the case. When we started selling drugs it was the first time you could see a Crip on a Blood's block. And they're getting along because they're working. They're trying to get money. And when you trying to get money you don't want no violence. You don't want the killing and the police coming around because that interrupts your cash flow."
He also spoke to host King Tech about his disgruntlement with Miami rapper Rick Ross, although he admits that the self-proclaimed Teflon Don made savvy business decisions by using his name.
"As a business man it was a smart move. He caught a name that was already hot in the streets and somebody he thought was gone and buried…He probably thought that I was never gonna get out and he was banking that I would never get out and he snatched the name. And maybe it was out of respect but at the same time he hasn't shown respect right now and today…when you wearin' another man's name are you really a man or are you living in a mask?"
He added, "I want my name back…Somewhere I heard him say that I should be happy that he used my name…How can I be happy when you took my car, and you're driving around in my car and I'm walking?"
Freeway Rick Ross is currently working on a biopic based on his life.
The Wake Up Show airs every Sunday night at 11pm PST on Los Angeles; Power 106 FM station.