A US judge has ruled that 50 Cent will still have to go to court over leaking a sex tape despite the rapper declaring himself bankrupt.
Last week, a New York jury awarded Lastonia Leviston $5 million after it ruled that the rapper, real name Curtis Jackson III, didn’t have her permission when he posted a sexually explicit video she made with her boyfriend.
Days after Jackson was ordered to pay up, he filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, reporting assets and debts each in the range of $10 million and $50 million.
Jackson was supposed to make certain information about his finances available so the court could pursue deliberate punitive damages, but instead responded by filing for bankruptcy. Leviston’s lawyer alleged that the rapper did so to avoid testifying.
The court case comes at an unfortunate time for the rapper, who is currently doing press and promo for the film Southpaw, starring Jake Gyllenhaal.
Appearing on Conan O’Brian last week, he was probed about his financial situation, and said “When you’re successful and publicly noted, you become the ideal person for people to have lawsuits for.”
Speaking to the Washington Post, Leviston’s attorney, Elizabeth Austin, said she believed Jackson’s bankruptcy was simply a stall tactic.
“I think we’re very clear in our papers that he’s engaged in numerous tactics to delay the eventual entry of a judgment in the state court litigation,” she said.
“We believe this bankruptcy is yet another one of those tactics, and quite frankly, I’ve not seen all of the comments that have been made in the media. I’ve only seen some of them, but I think that would seem to support our position.”
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