- Fiza Pirani The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
According to the Associated Press, the former pharmaceutical executive was convicted in August of three counts of security fraud and is currently awaiting his Jan. 16 sentencing at a federal jail in Brooklyn, New York.
Shkreli has said and done some unusual things, including purchasing a one-of-a-kind Wu-Tang Clan album for $2 million, which he’s boasted about repeatedly.
On Friday, prosecutors told a judge of a Brooklyn federal court that Shkreli should forfeit the $2 million album — in addition to $5 million in cash and other valuables — after his conviction this year.
Here are some of the most outrageous things the 34-year-old “Pharma Bro” has ever said (or done):
1.He offered $5,000 for a strand of Hillary Clinton’s hair
According to the New York Times, the two Facebook posts in early September led a federal judge to ultimately revoke his bail on Sept. 13.
“That is a solicitation to assault in exchange for money that is not protected by the First Amendment,” Judge Kiyo A. Matsumoto said at the hearing in Brooklyn, New York.
Shkreli later edited his Facebook post to let people know it was meant to be satirical and eventually took it down altogether.
But the next day, he shared another post that read: “$5,000 but the hair has to include a follicle. Do not assault anyone for any reason ever (LOLIBERALS).”
“Stupid doesn’t make you violent,” Shkreli’s lawyer Benjamin Brafman argued, saying he deserved another chance.
“What is funny about that?” Matsumoto responded. “He doesn’t know who his followers are.”
2. He was banned from Twitter after harassing Teen Vogue editor Lauren Duca with creepy photoshopped collages.
In January, after propositioning Duca via direct message and receiving a flat-out rejection, Shkreli's trolling escalated to cyber harassment.
He photoshopped his face onto images of Duca and her husband (and used one as his Twitter profile picture). He also created photo collages of himself and her together.
“I have a small crush on @laurenduca,” his Twitter bio read. “Hope she doesn’t find out.”
Duca tweeted the images of Shkreli’s profile to Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey.
A few days later, Shkreli was suspended from the social media platform.
According to the Washington Post, a Twitter representative confirmed that his suspension was related to his harassment of Duca.
3. He bought the only copy of the Wu-Tang Clan album, “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin” (which may not actually be an official Wu-Tang album) for $2 million.
In 2015, Shkreli paid $2 million in an auction for Wu-Tang Clan’s 31-track “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin” album, meaning he owns the rights to do anything he wants with it −except sell copies.
And in September 2017, Shkreli posted the single copy to eBay, an online auction scheduled to end Friday, Sept. 15.
In the description, Shkreli wrote, “I have not carefully listened to the album” and “At any time I may cancel this sale and I may even break this album in frustration.”
He added plans to donate half of the sale proceeds to medical research.
But Bloomberg recently reported that the Wu-Tang album might not be a Wu-Tang album after all.
Some members of the rap group said “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin” was an undertaking of Moroccan producer Tarik Azzougarh (or Cilvaringz), who reportedly persuaded RZA, leader of the Wu-Tang Clan, to endorse the project, according to Bloomberg.
When the reporters reached out to Shkreli, he declined to discuss “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin” and responded to an email with “hahahahahahahahahahahaha” before insulting the finance media site.
On Friday, Dec. 1, prosecutors wrote a letter to a judge in a Brooklyn federal court and stated that Shkreli should forfeit the $2 million album’s assets — in addition to $5 million in cash and other valuables — after his conviction this year.
Defense attorney Ben Brafman said on Friday that Shkreli would fight the forfeiture.
4. In 2016, he also offered millions of dollars to become the sole owner of Kanye West’s album, “The Life of Pablo.”
After buying the Wu-Tang Clan album for $2 million, Shkreli offered $10 million to Kanye West and his label, Def Jam Recordings, for “The Life of Pablo” just days before its official release.
“I believe you (and your partners) will find this financial arrangement more attractive than your current course of action,” he wrote.
Shkreli claimed the company is required to take his offer to its board of directors, which should delay the album by a few days.
According to Business Insider, he then tweeted “Got the album. Photos soon.” But followed suit with a frantic string of profane tweets about how he sent $15 million via Bitcoin to someone named “Daquan,” but he didn’t actually get the album.
Shkreli said he would contact the creator of Bitcoin, Satoshi, to get his money back.
5. Before he was suspended on Twitter, he also promoted “clovergender awareness,” a hoax involving the existence of people who identify as adults attracted to children.
Fact-check site Snopes.com debunked the existence of the claim that such individuals who are legitimately identifying as “clovergender” and calling for the acceptance of the new identity as false.
The term “clovergender” was “evidently created by pranksters in order to mock individuals of non-binary gender,” Snopes.com wrote.