Music

Music Executive Raphy Pina Is Found Guilty of Illegal Possession of Firearms, Says ‘I Just Lost the First Round of 12’

Pina Records founder, music producer and artist manager Raphy Pina Nieves, 43, was found guilty of illegal possession of firearms on Wednesday, December 22 by a jury in the ​​U.S. Federal Court building in San Juan, Puerto Rico after a six-day trial. The guilty verdict means Pina Nieves now faces up to 20 years in prison, although his sentence will be decided by a federal judge on April 1. 

Pina Nieves’ partner Natti Natasha appeared in court today to support him, showing the strength of their nearly six-year relationship, and the bond of parenthood after giving birth to Vida Isabelle last May.

Natasha was joined by reggaeton powerhouse Daddy Yankee, who Pina Nieves manages, and three of the music exec’s children from previous relationships: Mia, Monty, and Chingui. Arriving at the courthouse, Natasha told the press that they came to “support” Pina, and that the family was more united than ever. The “Sin Pijama” singer explained, “we’ve all been at home. I’ve been caring for them… we’re supporting [Pina] and giving him lots of love.”

Although the case and maximum 20-year sentence comes as a shock to many, Pina Nieves was originally accused in early 2020. The FBI intercepted a phone call between the producer and a friend on February 6, 2020, during which he talked about having guns and bullets in his home in Caguas.

The police obtained the firearms on April 1, 2020, leading them to charge Pina Nieves on two counts: illegally possessing a firearm, and possessing an automatic firearm. All of this came after a shooting occurred at one of Pina Nieves’ Caguas music studios on December 7, 2020, with another attack occurring that same night at a Daddy Yankee concert in Puerto Rico’s Coliseo. Police found that the ammunition of both shootings matched up

As expected, the producer is not taking his guilty verdict sitting down, and plans on fighting back. His lawyer Francisco Rebollo already shared that they have decided to appeal the verdict, and that the typical sentencing varies from probation to around three to four years in prison — fully depending on the judge’s decision. Either way, he explained, “this isn’t done yet.” 

Pina Nieves took the same attitude as his lawyer, exiting the courthouse today with his head high and his children and partner Natti Natasha by his side. When asked about the verdict by reporters, he stated: “I just lost the first round out of 12. I am a warrior, I’m going to keep going, and I’m going to show the world who Raphy Pina is.”

Daddy Yankee also shared a few words as the group left the courthouse after the verdict, saying, “we respect the jury’s verdict but we don’t agree with it. That being said, we’re happy that we can celebrate New Year’s Eve at Pina’s house.” Choosing to share a positive message, he continued, “[Pina] is going through a difficult moment right now, but I see him calm… I see him happy that he can celebrate New Year’s Eve with his family.”

Once at home, Pina shared an 8-minute live video on Instagram, talking about the verdict. He thanked his loved ones and fans for all the prayers, “cariño y afecto,” explaining how he sees the situation as a challenge he and his family will overcome. 

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