To meet the mark of $7.4 million—the amount in assets that prosecutors have asked Judge Kiyo Matsumoto to seize from pharma-douche Martin Shkreli—feds have plans to confiscate the one-of-one Wu-Tang Clan album, Once Upon a Time in Shaolin, and the long-awaited Lil Wayne album, Tha Carter V, from Shkreli’s possession. After collecting $5 million bail from the shamed former pharmaceutical exec, the rap albums, in addition to a work of art and other assets, will be seized to bridge the difference.
Shkreli is currently behind bars awaiting sentencing on his August securities fraud conviction, and the requests for asset seizure came in the form of a forfeiture submission filed Thursday in a Brooklyn federal court. Feds seek the Wu-Tang and Weezy albums, a Picasso, and a World War II-time Enigma codebreaking machine.
The catch here is that Shaolin may no longer be in Shkreli’s possession. Back in September, Shkreli, who purchased the album when its initial price tag was $2 million, posted it on eBay for sale by auction, and a winning bid was reported at $1 million. However, it’s unclear whether that bidder completed the transaction, or whether Shaolin actually exchanged hands afterwards. It could’ve been one big decoy.
There’s no way of truly knowing whether Tha Carter V is in Shkreli’s possession, either, and he happened upon that project thanks to a stranger-than-fiction alleged event in which Lil Wayne forgot to eject the unreleased, near-mythical album from an old Bugatti. Which he then sold. Which Shkreli later purchased—Carter V still in the CD drive (?). It does appear that the asshole got his hands on something substantial, though, as he’s already managed to incense the embattled rapper.
Just about every storyline involving this guy, like the bounty he put on a strand of Hillary Clinton’s hair, is either ridiculous or upsetting. This one falls under both categories. The feds in possession of two of hip hop’s most coveted works? Not good.
Buzzfeed News reports that Shkreli’s attorney plans on fighting the forfeiture request “vigorously.” No surprise there.