Man who paid $2m for Wu-Tang Clan album charged with stock fraud
Martin Shkreli – the man who bought Wu-Tang Clan’s multi-million dollar, one-of-a-kind album – has been arrested on suspicion of stock fraud.
Shkreli recently made headlines by buying the rights to life-saving drug Daraprim and increasing the cost from $13.50 a pill to $750.
He then went on to purchase Wu-Tang Clan’s ‘Once Upon A Time In Shaolin’ double album, of which just one copy exists, for $2 million (£1.3 million).
Bloomberg reports today (December 17) that Shkreli has been charged with illegally taking stock from his biotechnology firm Retrophin Inc and using it to pay debts from other, unrelated business dealings.
Shkreli has not yet responded to the claims.
In an interview oublished this week, Shkreli described himself as being “pissed off” by Wu-Tang Clan for “talking shit behind my back”.
The group’s de-facto leader RZA recently hinted that he wouldn’t have sold the album to Shkreli had he known of the Daraprim at the time. “The sale of ‘Once Upon a Time in Shaolin’ was agreed upon in May, well before Martin Skhreli’s [sic] business practices came to light. We decided to give a significant portion of the proceeds to charity,” he said in a statement.
RZA’s comments seem to have offended Skhreli, who has told HipHopDX that Wu-Tang are “starting to turn on me”.
“I’m the most successful Albanian to ever walk the face of this Earth,” he claimed. “I bought the album. [There’s a] big fucking check in RZA and Cilvaringz’ pocket now, but [now] they’re starting to turn up on me.”
Skhreli added: “This [Wu-Tang] thing is starting to get pretty tense. You probably see that increasingly. I’m getting pretty frustrated by it. I bought the most expensive album in the history of mankind and fucking RZA is talking shit behind my back and online in plain sight.”
“I’m just getting pissed off. That’s not the way I do business. If I hand you $2 million, fucking show me some respect. At least have the decency to say nothing or ‘no comment.’ The guy says ‘before his business practices came to light.’ What the fuck does that mean? I fucking make money. That’s what I do. That’s why I can fucking afford a fucking $2 million album. What do you think I do, make cookies? No, motherfucker. I sell drugs… I felt insulted.”