Judgment day is coming: Federal judge orders Martin Shkreli to forfeit a small fortune following felony convictions
Already facing a stretch in prison that could cost him much of the rest of his life, biotech exec Martin Shkreli also faces the loss of his fortune.
Judge Kiyo Matsumoto — who tossed Shkreli into prison 6 months ago after he put out a bounty on Hillary Clinton’s hair while on probation — says Shkreli must forfeit the $5 million account he signed over for bail money along with other assets that include his stake in a biotech company, a Wu-Tang Clan and Lil’ Wayne albums he bought, as well as a Picasso.
The forfeitures amount to $7.36 million, which will have to be paid out of the seized assets — along with any third party claims. The judge stayed the move, though, pending Shkreli’s appeal.
The biotech company the judge cited is Turing, now called Vyera, which made Shkreli notorious after he bought an old drug called Daraprim and jacked the price by 5,000%-plus. The controversy he inspired, and Shkreli’s willingness to incite an online mob with his taunts and jibes on Twitter, made him a household name. Investigators later nabbed him on felony charges related to two defunct funds he ran, wiping out the money investors trusted to him.
As for the spike in the drug price, that’s completely legal, and Congress has yet to pass any new law that could prevent it from happening again and again.
In the end, Shkreli was found guilty on three charges of felony fraud, and the judge showed little willingness to forgive his transgressions even though he came up with stock from another biotech company — Retrophin — to pay them off later.
Shkreli will be sentenced on Friday after the judge found him responsible for $10.4 million in losses. If she follows federal sentencing guidelines, the biotech exec could land up behind bars with a sentence of more than 10 years. Aside from the appeals and occasional look backs to remember, the Shkreli saga is coming to close after a run of two-and-a-half years.
Image: Martin Shkreli leaves federal court in June, 2017. Shutterstock