Rapper 50 Cent Files for Bankruptcy

13 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

50 Cent files for bankruptcy amid $5 million sex-tape trial.

The move comes three days after a New York jury ordered the rapper to pay $5 million in damages to a woman who sued him for obtaining and sharing a sex tape in which she was prominently featured. 50 Cent—whose legal name is Curtis James Jackson III—had filed a separate bankruptcy petition in May in an attempt to derail the lawsuit.

Rapper and business mogul 50 Cent has filed for bankruptcy, a stunning financial turn considering his estimated net worth had been pegged at $155 million as recently as May.Curtis ’50 Cent’ Jackson attends the ‘Power’ season two premiere event with a special performance from 50 Cent, G-Unit and other guests on June 2, 2015 in New York City. (credit: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for Starz) NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – 50 Cent, the rapper famous in part for videos depicting his lavish lifestyle, sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in court filings Monday. His lawyers contended that if his boxing promotion company was bankrupt, and he was the primary owner, then he was protected from lawsuits under bankruptcy law. The six jurors found that Jackson, as part of his rap beef with rival Rick Ross, posted a private sex video featuring Ross’ baby mama online to millions of viewers.

Documents submitted to a Connecticut court for the Ch. 11 bankruptcy filing reported both assets and liabilities in the range of $10 million to $50 million. Manhattan jurors were set to continue deliberating this week on possible further, punitive damages in Lastonia Leviston’s invasion-of-privacy lawsuit against the multiplatinum-selling “Get Rich or Die Tryin”‘ artist. The bankruptcy claim comes just days after The New York Times published a fawning profile of Jackson calling him a “Renaissance Man” who favours Versace shirts and has “exceptional business instincts.” Jackson had tried to duck the sex tape trial in May by filing for bankruptcy on behalf of his boxing promotions company, but a federal judge ruled that the civil case must go forward and threatened the rapper with sanctions. Brewer III says 50 Cent and his legal team are “disappointed in the verdict but very appreciative of the service of the jury and the court.” Leviston’s lawyer, Philip Freidin, declined to comment on the award. The jury is reportedly set to deliberate on awarding additional damages to Lastonia Leviston, his adversary in court, beyond the $5 million already ordered.

Other moves were less successful: a clothing line has since shuttered, a headphones debacle resulted in a multi-million dollar lawsuit, and a vodka partnership failed to generate significant buzz on liquor shelves. 50 Cent is still trying to make waves in the audio world, as Fortune previously reported. At the time the video surfaced, Ross and 50 Cent were trading barbs via video, lyrics and interviews. 50 Cent got the 2008 tape from the man in it, Leviston’s boyfriend at the time. The rapper and his lawyers said that 50 Cent didn’t actually post the video but that Leviston’s then-boyfriend said she wouldn’t mind if he did, and he thought that would suffice. The rapper’s latest albums have sold poorly and he has even developed a sideline business as a life coach, according to GQ. “Conflict is what he knows,” the magazine wrote. “No one in rap has used it more to his advantage.”

The Pimpin’ Curly character was just “joking” by referring to Leviston as a “porn star,” 50 Cent said during sworn pre-trial questioning that was played for the jury, according to news reports. Now 40, he’s also a businessman — his interests have ranged from mining to water drinks — and an actor whose credits include the Starz network action series “Power” and the upcoming boxing movie “Southpaw.” (TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries.

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