The sole copy of a Wu-Tang Clan record, forfeited by the infamous “Pharma Bro” Martin Shkreli, has been sold by the US government, according to a Justice Department press release published Tuesday.
Shkreli is currently serving out a seven-year prison sentence issued in August 2017 for securities fraud by a Brooklyn, New York, federal court. As part of his sentencing, he was ordered to forfeit his copy of Once Upon a time in Shaolin, the sole copy of the record released by the hip-hop group Wu-Tang clan. Prosecutors did not release the name of the buyer or the selling price, citing a confidentiality provision in the contract.
“With today’s sale of this one-of-a-kind album, his payment of the forfeiture is now complete.”
The proceeds will “be applied to satisfy the outstanding balance owed on the Forfeiture money judgement,” the press release 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,” acting US Attorney Jacquelyn M. Kasulis said in a statement Tuesday. “With today’s sale of this one-of-a-kind album, his payment of the forfeiture is now complete.”
Shkreli bought the album in 2015 for a reported $2 million at auction. The purchase occurred around the same time that he and his pharmaceuticals company gained national attention for jacking up the price of a widely used HIV medication, Daraprim, by over 5,000 percent.
Shkreli’s purchase of the album gave him sole control over who could listen to it. He briefly streamed excerpts of the record on Periscope following President Donald Trump’s surprising presidential win in 2016. The record has only been heard publicly when 13 minutes of it was played at the MoMA PS1 in New York in 2015.