Wu-Tang Clan's one-of-a-kind album once owned by Martin Shkreli sold by U.S. Government

Entertainment

Fox News 28 July, 2021 - 08:58am 42 views

Who bought Wu Tang album?

The U.S. Department of Justice announced Tuesday that it has sold the only copy of the Wu-Tang Clan album Once Upon a Time in Shaolin, which was famously purchased by "pharma bro" Martin Shkreli in 2015. EW.comMartin Shkreli's Wu-Tang Clan album sold by US government | EW.com

U.S. sells Martin Shkreli's Wu-Tang Clan album

Reuters 28 July, 2021 - 11:10am

World's most expensive record sold to unknown buyer by US Government

Punknews.org 27 July, 2021 - 02:00pm

The saga of Wu-Tang Clan's Once Upon a Time in Shaolin continues. To refresh your memory, a few years ago, Wu-Tang announced that they had made a new album, but had only made a single copy of that record. The album was sold to the highest bidder who bid $2 million, which made the record the most expensive album ever sold. That buyer of course turned out to be all around d-bag, martin Shkreli.

But, after Shkreli got the record, he was convicted of three felonies related to security fraud and had his assets seized by the Federal government, including his Wu-Tang album.

Today, the Feds revealed that they sold the record to an undisclosed buyer for an undisclosed amount. Confidentiality was a requirement of the sale. It appears we may never see or hear from this mysterious record again. You can read the EDNY's press release right here.

U.S. Sells One-of-a-Kind Wu-Tang Album to Cover Martin Shkreli’s Debt

The New York Times 27 July, 2021 - 12:53pm

Prosecutors did not announce who purchased the album, or for how much, but a lawyer for Mr. Shkreli said the sale price appeared to be at least $2.2 million.

A one-of-a-kind album recorded by the Wu-Tang Clan and sold at auction to the disgraced pharmaceutical executive and hedge fund manager Martin Shkreli has been purchased by an anonymous buyer for an undisclosed sum of money, the federal prosecutors who seized the album three years ago said.

Jacquelyn M. Kasulis, the acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, announced the sale of the one known copy of the album, “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin,” in a news release on Tuesday.

The terms of the sale required the government to keep the purchase price and the buyer secret, but the sale satisfied the balance that Mr. Shkreli had owed the government, according to the news release. The buyer was a group of people or a company, rather than an individual, according to a person with knowledge of the sale.

The unique album — more akin to a piece of fine art than a standard record — was seized by the government in 2018 after a judge said that it could be used to pay part of the $7.36 million that Mr. Shkreli owed.

Mr. Shkreli’s lawyer, Brianne E. Murphy, said she had no information about the buyer, but said that she was happy that Mr. Shkreli had satisfied his forfeiture balance and was “closing this chapter.”

In April, a federal prosecutor in Brooklyn said in a court filing that Mr. Shkreli still owed the government $2.2 million. Ms. Murphy said Tuesday that Mr. Shkreli having paid the remainder of his balance indicated that the album had sold for $2.2 million or more. She added that she had no actual knowledge of the sale price.

Later on Tuesday, Ms. Murphy said she had spoken to Mr. Shkreli, who said he was “pleased with the sale price and RIP O.D.B.”

The buyer was represented by Peter Scoolidge, a lawyer who has represented several artists in cases related to the album over the years. Mr. Scoolidge said in a statement that it was “the most interesting deal I have ever worked on.”

In a brief interview, Mr. Scoolidge added that the buyer, whose identity he declined to reveal, would be bound by the restrictions in the original contract, which bar the record owner or owners from releasing it commercially for 88 years.

Mr. Scoolidge said that he had inspected the album as part of the arrangement. Asked what he thought of it, he said, “It’s a banger, man. It’s a banger.”

Mr. Shkreli became famous in 2015, when he boosted the price of a drug used to treat a rare disease by 5,000 percent overnight through his company, Turing Pharmaceuticals. The drug, Daraprim, was used to treat a life-threatening parasitic infection; the company’s actions brought the cost of treatment annually for some patients up to hundreds of thousands of dollars, and cast a spotlight on price hikes being made on generic drugs.

Instead of recoiling from the negative attention he received after the price hike, Mr. Shkreli leaned into it, drawing near-universal opprobrium. (Donald J. Trump, then a presidential candidate, said, “He looks like a spoiled brat to me.”)

In December of that year, Bloomberg Business reported that Mr. Shkreli had purchased the sought-after album at auction for $2 million.

The album, the hype around which in some ways presaged the current craze for nonfungible tokens or NFTs, was made on the premise that it would only be sold to one bidder.

In purchasing the album, the buyer gained control over a record by one of the most well-regarded rap groups in the history of the genre. (The band’s loyal fans often insist that the album is not really an unheard Wu-Tang album but rather a compilation made by a little-known producer, Cilvaringz.)

In 2017, Mr. Shkreli was convicted of fraud in connection with two hedge funds he ran, MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare, as well as conspiracy to commit securities fraud. The following year, he was sentenced to seven years in prison.

U.S. Sells One-of-a-Kind Wu-Tang Album to Cover Martin Shkreli’s Debt

CBS New York 27 July, 2021 - 12:53pm

Prosecutors did not announce who purchased the album, or for how much, but a lawyer for Mr. Shkreli said the sale price appeared to be at least $2.2 million.

A one-of-a-kind album recorded by the Wu-Tang Clan and sold at auction to the disgraced pharmaceutical executive and hedge fund manager Martin Shkreli has been purchased by an anonymous buyer for an undisclosed sum of money, the federal prosecutors who seized the album three years ago said.

Jacquelyn M. Kasulis, the acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, announced the sale of the one known copy of the album, “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin,” in a news release on Tuesday.

The terms of the sale required the government to keep the purchase price and the buyer secret, but the sale satisfied the balance that Mr. Shkreli had owed the government, according to the news release. The buyer was a group of people or a company, rather than an individual, according to a person with knowledge of the sale.

The unique album — more akin to a piece of fine art than a standard record — was seized by the government in 2018 after a judge said that it could be used to pay part of the $7.36 million that Mr. Shkreli owed.

Mr. Shkreli’s lawyer, Brianne E. Murphy, said she had no information about the buyer, but said that she was happy that Mr. Shkreli had satisfied his forfeiture balance and was “closing this chapter.”

In April, a federal prosecutor in Brooklyn said in a court filing that Mr. Shkreli still owed the government $2.2 million. Ms. Murphy said Tuesday that Mr. Shkreli having paid the remainder of his balance indicated that the album had sold for $2.2 million or more. She added that she had no actual knowledge of the sale price.

Later on Tuesday, Ms. Murphy said she had spoken to Mr. Shkreli, who said he was “pleased with the sale price and RIP O.D.B.”

The buyer was represented by Peter Scoolidge, a lawyer who has represented several artists in cases related to the album over the years. Mr. Scoolidge said in a statement that it was “the most interesting deal I have ever worked on.”

In a brief interview, Mr. Scoolidge added that the buyer, whose identity he declined to reveal, would be bound by the restrictions in the original contract, which bar the record owner or owners from releasing it commercially for 88 years.

Mr. Scoolidge said that he had inspected the album as part of the arrangement. Asked what he thought of it, he said, “It’s a banger, man. It’s a banger.”

Mr. Shkreli became famous in 2015, when he boosted the price of a drug used to treat a rare disease by 5,000 percent overnight through his company, Turing Pharmaceuticals. The drug, Daraprim, was used to treat a life-threatening parasitic infection; the company’s actions brought the cost of treatment annually for some patients up to hundreds of thousands of dollars, and cast a spotlight on price hikes being made on generic drugs.

Instead of recoiling from the negative attention he received after the price hike, Mr. Shkreli leaned into it, drawing near-universal opprobrium. (Donald J. Trump, then a presidential candidate, said, “He looks like a spoiled brat to me.”)

In December of that year, Bloomberg Business reported that Mr. Shkreli had purchased the sought-after album at auction for $2 million.

The album, the hype around which in some ways presaged the current craze for nonfungible tokens or NFTs, was made on the premise that it would only be sold to one bidder.

In purchasing the album, the buyer gained control over a record by one of the most well-regarded rap groups in the history of the genre. (The band’s loyal fans often insist that the album is not really an unheard Wu-Tang album but rather a compilation made by a little-known producer, Cilvaringz.)

In 2017, Mr. Shkreli was convicted of fraud in connection with two hedge funds he ran, MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare, as well as conspiracy to commit securities fraud. The following year, he was sentenced to seven years in prison.

U.S. Sells One-of-a-Kind Wu-Tang Album to Cover Martin Shkreli’s Debt

FOX 2 St. Louis 27 July, 2021 - 12:53pm

Prosecutors did not announce who purchased the album, or for how much, but a lawyer for Mr. Shkreli said the sale price appeared to be at least $2.2 million.

A one-of-a-kind album recorded by the Wu-Tang Clan and sold at auction to the disgraced pharmaceutical executive and hedge fund manager Martin Shkreli has been purchased by an anonymous buyer for an undisclosed sum of money, the federal prosecutors who seized the album three years ago said.

Jacquelyn M. Kasulis, the acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, announced the sale of the one known copy of the album, “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin,” in a news release on Tuesday.

The terms of the sale required the government to keep the purchase price and the buyer secret, but the sale satisfied the balance that Mr. Shkreli had owed the government, according to the news release. The buyer was a group of people or a company, rather than an individual, according to a person with knowledge of the sale.

The unique album — more akin to a piece of fine art than a standard record — was seized by the government in 2018 after a judge said that it could be used to pay part of the $7.36 million that Mr. Shkreli owed.

Mr. Shkreli’s lawyer, Brianne E. Murphy, said she had no information about the buyer, but said that she was happy that Mr. Shkreli had satisfied his forfeiture balance and was “closing this chapter.”

In April, a federal prosecutor in Brooklyn said in a court filing that Mr. Shkreli still owed the government $2.2 million. Ms. Murphy said Tuesday that Mr. Shkreli having paid the remainder of his balance indicated that the album had sold for $2.2 million or more. She added that she had no actual knowledge of the sale price.

Later on Tuesday, Ms. Murphy said she had spoken to Mr. Shkreli, who said he was “pleased with the sale price and RIP O.D.B.”

The buyer was represented by Peter Scoolidge, a lawyer who has represented several artists in cases related to the album over the years. Mr. Scoolidge said in a statement that it was “the most interesting deal I have ever worked on.”

In a brief interview, Mr. Scoolidge added that the buyer, whose identity he declined to reveal, would be bound by the restrictions in the original contract, which bar the record owner or owners from releasing it commercially for 88 years.

Mr. Scoolidge said that he had inspected the album as part of the arrangement. Asked what he thought of it, he said, “It’s a banger, man. It’s a banger.”

Mr. Shkreli became famous in 2015, when he boosted the price of a drug used to treat a rare disease by 5,000 percent overnight through his company, Turing Pharmaceuticals. The drug, Daraprim, was used to treat a life-threatening parasitic infection; the company’s actions brought the cost of treatment annually for some patients up to hundreds of thousands of dollars, and cast a spotlight on price hikes being made on generic drugs.

Instead of recoiling from the negative attention he received after the price hike, Mr. Shkreli leaned into it, drawing near-universal opprobrium. (Donald J. Trump, then a presidential candidate, said, “He looks like a spoiled brat to me.”)

In December of that year, Bloomberg Business reported that Mr. Shkreli had purchased the sought-after album at auction for $2 million.

The album, the hype around which in some ways presaged the current craze for nonfungible tokens or NFTs, was made on the premise that it would only be sold to one bidder.

In purchasing the album, the buyer gained control over a record by one of the most well-regarded rap groups in the history of the genre. (The band’s loyal fans often insist that the album is not really an unheard Wu-Tang album but rather a compilation made by a little-known producer, Cilvaringz.)

In 2017, Mr. Shkreli was convicted of fraud in connection with two hedge funds he ran, MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare, as well as conspiracy to commit securities fraud. The following year, he was sentenced to seven years in prison.

U.S. Sells One-of-a-Kind Wu-Tang Album to Cover Martin Shkreli’s Debt

CNN 27 July, 2021 - 12:53pm

Prosecutors did not announce who purchased the album, or for how much, but a lawyer for Mr. Shkreli said the sale price appeared to be at least $2.2 million.

A one-of-a-kind album recorded by the Wu-Tang Clan and sold at auction to the disgraced pharmaceutical executive and hedge fund manager Martin Shkreli has been purchased by an anonymous buyer for an undisclosed sum of money, the federal prosecutors who seized the album three years ago said.

Jacquelyn M. Kasulis, the acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, announced the sale of the one known copy of the album, “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin,” in a news release on Tuesday.

The terms of the sale required the government to keep the purchase price and the buyer secret, but the sale satisfied the balance that Mr. Shkreli had owed the government, according to the news release. The buyer was a group of people or a company, rather than an individual, according to a person with knowledge of the sale.

The unique album — more akin to a piece of fine art than a standard record — was seized by the government in 2018 after a judge said that it could be used to pay part of the $7.36 million that Mr. Shkreli owed.

Mr. Shkreli’s lawyer, Brianne E. Murphy, said she had no information about the buyer, but said that she was happy that Mr. Shkreli had satisfied his forfeiture balance and was “closing this chapter.”

In April, a federal prosecutor in Brooklyn said in a court filing that Mr. Shkreli still owed the government $2.2 million. Ms. Murphy said Tuesday that Mr. Shkreli having paid the remainder of his balance indicated that the album had sold for $2.2 million or more. She added that she had no actual knowledge of the sale price.

Later on Tuesday, Ms. Murphy said she had spoken to Mr. Shkreli, who said he was “pleased with the sale price and RIP O.D.B.”

The buyer was represented by Peter Scoolidge, a lawyer who has represented several artists in cases related to the album over the years. Mr. Scoolidge said in a statement that it was “the most interesting deal I have ever worked on.”

In a brief interview, Mr. Scoolidge added that the buyer, whose identity he declined to reveal, would be bound by the restrictions in the original contract, which bar the record owner or owners from releasing it commercially for 88 years.

Mr. Scoolidge said that he had inspected the album as part of the arrangement. Asked what he thought of it, he said, “It’s a banger, man. It’s a banger.”

Mr. Shkreli became famous in 2015, when he boosted the price of a drug used to treat a rare disease by 5,000 percent overnight through his company, Turing Pharmaceuticals. The drug, Daraprim, was used to treat a life-threatening parasitic infection; the company’s actions brought the cost of treatment annually for some patients up to hundreds of thousands of dollars, and cast a spotlight on price hikes being made on generic drugs.

Instead of recoiling from the negative attention he received after the price hike, Mr. Shkreli leaned into it, drawing near-universal opprobrium. (Donald J. Trump, then a presidential candidate, said, “He looks like a spoiled brat to me.”)

In December of that year, Bloomberg Business reported that Mr. Shkreli had purchased the sought-after album at auction for $2 million.

The album, the hype around which in some ways presaged the current craze for nonfungible tokens or NFTs, was made on the premise that it would only be sold to one bidder.

In purchasing the album, the buyer gained control over a record by one of the most well-regarded rap groups in the history of the genre. (The band’s loyal fans often insist that the album is not really an unheard Wu-Tang album but rather a compilation made by a little-known producer, Cilvaringz.)

In 2017, Mr. Shkreli was convicted of fraud in connection with two hedge funds he ran, MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare, as well as conspiracy to commit securities fraud. The following year, he was sentenced to seven years in prison.

U.S. Sells One-of-a-Kind Wu-Tang Album to Cover Martin Shkreli’s Debt

Daily Mail 27 July, 2021 - 12:53pm

Prosecutors did not announce who purchased the album, or for how much, but a lawyer for Mr. Shkreli said the sale price appeared to be at least $2.2 million.

A one-of-a-kind album recorded by the Wu-Tang Clan and sold at auction to the disgraced pharmaceutical executive and hedge fund manager Martin Shkreli has been purchased by an anonymous buyer for an undisclosed sum of money, the federal prosecutors who seized the album three years ago said.

Jacquelyn M. Kasulis, the acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, announced the sale of the one known copy of the album, “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin,” in a news release on Tuesday.

The terms of the sale required the government to keep the purchase price and the buyer secret, but the sale satisfied the balance that Mr. Shkreli had owed the government, according to the news release. The buyer was a group of people or a company, rather than an individual, according to a person with knowledge of the sale.

The unique album — more akin to a piece of fine art than a standard record — was seized by the government in 2018 after a judge said that it could be used to pay part of the $7.36 million that Mr. Shkreli owed.

Mr. Shkreli’s lawyer, Brianne E. Murphy, said she had no information about the buyer, but said that she was happy that Mr. Shkreli had satisfied his forfeiture balance and was “closing this chapter.”

In April, a federal prosecutor in Brooklyn said in a court filing that Mr. Shkreli still owed the government $2.2 million. Ms. Murphy said Tuesday that Mr. Shkreli having paid the remainder of his balance indicated that the album had sold for $2.2 million or more. She added that she had no actual knowledge of the sale price.

Later on Tuesday, Ms. Murphy said she had spoken to Mr. Shkreli, who said he was “pleased with the sale price and RIP O.D.B.”

The buyer was represented by Peter Scoolidge, a lawyer who has represented several artists in cases related to the album over the years. Mr. Scoolidge said in a statement that it was “the most interesting deal I have ever worked on.”

In a brief interview, Mr. Scoolidge added that the buyer, whose identity he declined to reveal, would be bound by the restrictions in the original contract, which bar the record owner or owners from releasing it commercially for 88 years.

Mr. Scoolidge said that he had inspected the album as part of the arrangement. Asked what he thought of it, he said, “It’s a banger, man. It’s a banger.”

Mr. Shkreli became famous in 2015, when he boosted the price of a drug used to treat a rare disease by 5,000 percent overnight through his company, Turing Pharmaceuticals. The drug, Daraprim, was used to treat a life-threatening parasitic infection; the company’s actions brought the cost of treatment annually for some patients up to hundreds of thousands of dollars, and cast a spotlight on price hikes being made on generic drugs.

Instead of recoiling from the negative attention he received after the price hike, Mr. Shkreli leaned into it, drawing near-universal opprobrium. (Donald J. Trump, then a presidential candidate, said, “He looks like a spoiled brat to me.”)

In December of that year, Bloomberg Business reported that Mr. Shkreli had purchased the sought-after album at auction for $2 million.

The album, the hype around which in some ways presaged the current craze for nonfungible tokens or NFTs, was made on the premise that it would only be sold to one bidder.

In purchasing the album, the buyer gained control over a record by one of the most well-regarded rap groups in the history of the genre. (The band’s loyal fans often insist that the album is not really an unheard Wu-Tang album but rather a compilation made by a little-known producer, Cilvaringz.)

In 2017, Mr. Shkreli was convicted of fraud in connection with two hedge funds he ran, MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare, as well as conspiracy to commit securities fraud. The following year, he was sentenced to seven years in prison.

U.S. sells one-of-a-kind Wu-Tang Clan album forfeited by 'pharma bro' Martin Shkreli

CNBC 27 July, 2021 - 12:37pm

A one-of-a-kind album by the hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan that was once owned by notorious "pharma bro" Martin Shkreli finally was sold Tuesday by the U.S. government, more than three years after Shkreli forfeited the album as part of his conviction for securities fraud.

The buyer and the sale price of the album, "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin," were not revealed Tuesday by prosecutors, who cited a confidentiality provision in the contract.

But the Brooklyn, New York, U.S. attorney's office said that the proceeds of the album's sale were enough to satisfy what remained of a nearly $7.4 million forfeiture judgment against Shkreli.

And an April filing by prosecutors in a civil lawsuit in Manhattan federal court against Shkreli by a creditor indicated that Shkreli owed almost $2.4 million on the forfeiture.

Peter Scoolidge, a New York lawyer who says that he represented the unknown buyer, in a statement issued by a spokesman, said, "This was the most interesting deal I have ever worked on."

The 38-year-old Shkreli, who is serving a seven-year prison sentence for his August 2017 criminal conviction in Brooklyn federal court, had been ordered to surrender the unique album and other assets to satisfy the forfeiture.

Those assets had included the Lil Wayne album "Tha Carter V," an engraving on paper by Pablo Picasso and $5 million held in an E-Trade brokerage account.

Shkreli's trial lawyer Benjamin Brafman in an email to CNBC confirmed that the balance of Shkreli's forfeiture was satisfied by the sale.

Brafman also wrote, "I can also confirm that the sale price was substantially more than what Mr. Shkreli paid for it."

Brafman declined to answer whether Shkreli would receive any of the proceeds of the sale after the amount taken to satisfy the forfeiture.

Shkreli bought the Wu-Tang Clan album at auction for a reported $2 million in 2015 — giving him the only copy of the record, and allowing the New York City resident total control of whether anyone else could listen to the music on it.

The publicity stunt purchase of the album came in the same year that he gained widespread infamy for his pharmaceutical company hiking the price of anti-parasite medication Daraprim, which is used to treat HIV patients and newborns, by more than 5,000%.

Two years later, in the weeks after his trial ended, Shkreli had tried to sell "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin" in an online auction.

That filing said that given the satisfaction of Shkreli's forfeiture order, "there is no further need for the government to see priority in the proceeds from any liquidation of Shkreli's interest in Phoenixus."

Prosecutors said they are willing to turn over Shkreli's shares in Phoenixus to a court-appointed receiver for liquidation, along with the Picasso engraving.

The acting U.S. attorney for Brooklyn, Jacquelyn Kasulis, led the team of prosecutors at Shkreli's trial in 2017.

In a statement Tuesday, Kasulis said, "Through the diligent and persistent efforts of this Office and its law enforcement partners, Shkreli has been held accountable and paid the price for lying and stealing from investors to enrich himself."

"With today's sale of this one-of-a-kind album, his payment of the forfeiture is now complete," Kasulis said.

In 2017, New York state tax officials seized from Shkreli and auctioned off a rare Enigma encryption machine used by Nazi Germany during World War II, an unpublished manuscript signed by the mathematician Isaac Newton, a letter by the naturalist Charles Darwin, and a letter by the only legitimate child of the poet Lord Byron.

The proceeds from their sale, which totaled $134,500, satisfied a mere fraction of the more than $450,000 in state taxes Shkreli owed at the time.

Later Tuesday, Kasulis' office announced that a Brooklyn federal court judge had ordered the forfeiture to the United States of a 3,500-year-old clay tablet depicting a portion of the Sumerian poem "The Epic of Gilgamesh," which had been purchased by the Hobby Lobby arts and crafts chain for $1.6 million from a London auction house in 2014. Prosecutors had said in a lawsuit that the tablet rightly belonged to the government of Iraq.

Shkreli's trial had nothing to do with the price hike of Daraprim, which occurred when he was running the company known as Turing Pharmaceuticals.

Instead, the criminal case revolved around allegations that he had swindled investors at two hedge funds that he earlier ran, and used their money to start his first pharmaceutical company, Retrophin.

Shkreli was later ousted from publicly traded Retrophin, and was convicted of several criminal counts at trial. He currently is in a low-security prison in Allenwood, Pennsylvania, and is due to be released on Oct. 11, 2022.

Retrophin last year changed its name to Travere Therapeutics.

Earlier this month, Shkreli, while locked up in prison, beat back an effort by investors to take control of Phoenixus, the parent company of Vyera, formerly known as Turing Pharmaceuticals.

The investors trying to seize control of Phoenixus from purported allies of Shkreli include Kevin Mulleady, a former close friend of Shkreli.

Mulleady, who was identified by the Federal Trade Commission in a 2020 lawsuit as having been an unindicted co-conspirator of Shrekli in the criminal case, is a former chairman of the Phoenixus board and former CEO of Vyera.

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