United States

Martin Shkreli Ordered to Forfeit His Secret Wu-Tang Clan Album to the US Government

Shkreli bought the only known copy of Wu-Tang Clan's album "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin" for $2 million in 2015

What to Know

  • The federal government won an order forcing "Pharma Bro" Martin Shkreli to forfeit his one-of-a-kind copy of a Wu-Tang Clan album
  • Shkreli paid $2 million in 2015 for the only copy of "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin"
  • Shkreli was convicted of securities fraud last August and is awaiting sentencing

The U.S. government became an accidental rap mogul on Monday, winning an order to seize two rare albums from "Pharma Bro" and convicted fraudster Martin Shkreli. 

In 2015, the brash pharmaceutical executive bought the only known copy of the Wu-Tang Clan's "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin" for $2 million. He later got into a public dispute with members of the rap group, at one point releasing a bizarre video in which he -- surrounded by masked men -- threatened to erase Ghostface Killah from the album entirely. 

In late 2016, he claimed to have acquired the only copy of Lil Wayne's unreleased "Tha Carter V," even playing what he said was part of the album's first track online. 

In August, Shkreli was convicted of securities fraud, and he's now in jail awaiting sentencing. A judge revoked his bail in September after he publicly offered $5,000 for a lock of Hillary Clinton's hair. 

The government, in papers filed in federal court in Brooklyn last December, said it wanted Shkreli to forfeit some $7.4 million in assets pursuant to his conviction. A federal judge granted that motion on Monday and ordered the forfeiture. 

The forfeiture list included a brokerage account and a Picasso painting as well. 

Shkreli's lawyer Ben Brafman has previously said that forfeiture was "not an appropriate remedy" because none of Shkreli's investors lost money.

Shkreli is due to be sentenced on Friday, and faces the possibility of a decade in prison. 

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