Federal Prosecutors Want Martin Shkreli To Hand Over Rare $2 Million Wu-Tang Clan Album
Martin Shkreli, the so-called “Pharma Bro” who purchased Wu-Tang Clan‘s $2 million Once Upon Time in Shaolin album back in 2015, may have to return the one-of-a-kind release.
Shkreli was convicted of fraud in August and as a part of his conviction prosecutors suggested that he should forfeit $7.4 million, which could include $5 million in bail money as well as the $2 million Wu-Tang album he bought. The prosecution is also hoping to seize a Picasso painting that Shkreli owns, a copy of the long-lost Lil Wayne album Tha Carter V, his WWII Enigma machine, and his interest in Turing Pharmaceuticals, the pharmaceutical company he founded.
— David Mack (@davidmackau) December 1, 2017
“We will vigorously oppose the government motion,” Shkreli’s lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, said according to a report from Bloomberg. “Our position is clear. None of the investors lost any money and Martin did not personally benefit from any of the counts of conviction. Accordingly, forfeiture of any assets is not an appropriate remedy.”
However, earlier this year it was revealed that the Wu-Tang album Shkreli purchased is not technically a Wu-Tang project at all.
“It’s not an authorized Wu-Tang Clan album. It never was,” Domingo Neris, the manager of the rapper U-God, previously said.
“…when we did the verses, it was for a Cilvaringz album. How it became a Wu-Tang album from there? We have no knowledge of that,” James Ellis, the manager of core Wu-Tang member Method Man, added.
It is unknown how Once Upon a Time in Shaolin became a Wu-Tang album but according to Cilvaringz and RZA, when they were auctioning the album they made it with the rest of the Wu-Tang Clan in an effort to “restore the value of music at a time when listeners can download almost any release without paying.” The members of the group recorded their parts separately, with Cilvaringz and RZA being the only two producers that heard the album in its entirety.
Shkreli remains in custody after having his bail revoked for a disturbing Facebook post in which he offered people $5,000 for a lock of Hillary Clinton‘s hair.