50 Cent Testifies About His Finances in Sex-Tape Lawsuit

22 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

50 Cent Says He’s Not as Rich as He Seems.

50 Cent, the rapper, actor and businessman born Curtis Jackson III, appeared in Manhattan court on Tuesday and said that his public projections of extreme wealth were little more than a fantasy. NEW YORK – Rapper 50 Cent, ranked by Forbes as one of hip-hop’s five richest artists, downplayed his wealth on Tuesday as he testified in court about his finances, business deals and the media attention surrounding his recent bankruptcy filing.There’s an entire Wikipedia page dedicated solely to 50 Cent’s feuds, many of them too boring for even the most committed rap fan to be interested in.Taking the witness stand in Manhattan Supreme Court, 50 Cent said his claims about having a fleet of luxury cars on both coasts, loads of bling, and making a $1.6 million bet on Floyd Mayweather are all bogus.

A jury is deciding how much Fitty has to fork over to a woman whose private sex tape he posted online, in order to get back at rival rapper Rick Ross, who once fathered a baby with the woman. Asked about his boast of buying a Rolls Royce “on a whim” on July 4, Fitty, whose real name is Curtis Jackson, said he did get the fancy wheels, but only by trading in two other cars, including his Lamborghini. “I borrowed them,” he said. A jury has already ordered him to pay $5 million in damages in a lawsuit brought by a woman who said he didn’t have her permission when he released a sex tape she made with a boyfriend. Now in a second trial, the same jurors are deciding what amount of money would be an appropriate punishment as well as a deterrent to prevent him from doing a similar thing again.

The two spent over a year exchanging insults to drive up their respective website hits and album sales in 2009, before Jackson posted a sex-tape of Ross’s ex and the mother of his child Lastonia Leviston online. The entertainment mogul, who has sold millions of albums and earned a reported $100 million in 2007 from the sale of Vitamin Water, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in a Connecticut court last week. Questioned by an attorney for the woman, Lastonia Leviston, the musician-actor denied owning many luxury items — including expensive cars and flashy jewelry — saying he rents, borrows and leases instead. “It’s a borrowed piece of jewelry from the jeweler,” he told Leviston’s lawyer, Philip Freidin, when asked about a photo of a 65-karat ring he posted on his Instagram account. He is claiming that he’s worth no more than $4.4 million and whined that he made only 10 cents for each of the 38 million albums sold, a total of $3.8 million.

He noted that the rapper has successful music and acting careers, numerous endorsement deals, a popular website, his own record company, a Connecticut mansion and numerous luxury cars, including the trade-in Rolls Royce. Jackson had to admit he still commands top dollar for appearances, taking $100,000 for a day of filming “Spy” and $200,000 for a concert appearance last week in London. Jackson has said Leviston’s then-boyfriend gave him the 2008 tape and that, while he didn’t actually post it online, the boyfriend said she didn’t mind if he did.

He also confirmed that his 17-acre Connecticut estate has a basketball court and a nightclub — though he couldn’t remember the zip code for his 21-bedroom pad. But her previous relationship with Ross was enough for 50 to decide she must pay with her sexuality, her body and her privacy for the crimes of her former partner. In the tape, Jackson edited in his own narration using his alter ego “Pimpin’ Curly,” mocking Levinston’s body and calling her a “bi*ch and a “ho.” Jackson’s lawyer, James Renard, told the jury in opening that his client’s bank account is approaching zero because of unpaid debts — which includes $1,737 owed to his grandfather. Leviston is a living example of the blonde ‘bitch’ in Rihanna’s much talked about ‘Bitch Better Have My Money’ video, where a woman is stripped and beaten because she is the girlfriend of an accountant, who the song accuses of ripping off his client played by Rihanna. In the lyrics, the “accountant” character is supposed to have spent all of RiRi’s money and left her with a bad credit rating (who knew pop stars were so concerned about their credit ratings?), so obviously she has to punish him by murdering his girlfriend.

Both Leviston and the nameless fictitious BBHMM blonde are left naked and humiliated, punished for their partner’s mistakes in much the same way, and as easily, as you might run a key down an enemy’s expensive car. Asked Tuesday if he’d continued “humiliating” people online, Jackson said the digs at his rival were just “competition.” “That’s just the competitive nature of the art form,” he said.

In the eyes of 50 Cent and the characters depicted in Rihanna’s video, they aren’t people, women with lives and interests, but a possession, an extension of their male partners to be stolen and then destroyed. Jackson said in response, “I took two others back.” He added that such admissions were potentially damaging to his brand. “Now that I filed for bankruptcy,” Mr. He told Freidin he’d made light of the filing because, “You got to smile in public situations.” He’d previously portrayed the single mom as preying on him – even though he humiliated her by posting the sex tape online, complete with running — and crude — commentary about Leviston’s body. Apparently it was okay to humiliate Leviston as long as posting the video drove clicks, and in turn the sales of tickets, merchandise and 50 Cent’s own brand of pants.

It’s okay to watch a video depicting Rihanna acting out the torture of someone while a pop-up advert reminds us to buy the official perfume, because she’s making money. Perhaps another part of the problem is our struggle to see women who’ve ended up in videos they made but never dreamt would turn up online as real victims. Women who are naked on the Internet, even when the tapes are posted without their possession are a joke, as one Glastonbury-goer took time and a reasonable level of arts and crafts skills to remind Kim Kardashian this year during the festival. The idea that men can be embarrassed by their partner’s sexual history must be reinforced, even if that means lugging an eight-foot flag of Kardashian giving her ex-boyfriend a blowjob to rural Somerset.

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