Weeks after being ordered to pay a woman $5 million in damages over a bizarre sex tape lawsuit and filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, rapper 50 Cent is trying to reset the public’s perception of his wealth. Many people scoffed at his recent bankruptcy filing—how could a guy with an estimated net worth of $155 million argue that he can’t afford to pay out $5 million?
Because his actual net worth is closer to $4.4 million, according to his lawyers. As court proceedings related to the sex tape lawsuit continued in New York yesterday, Jackson appeared on the witness stand to answer questions about his finances and assert that his flashy lifestyle is just an act. “It’s entertainment,” he said, explaining that he borrows or rents most of the jewelry, cars, and other accoutrements that he displays in public and on Instagram.
“The hip-hop culture is aspirational,” he explained. The rapper’s bank account balance is “approaching zero,” according to his lawyers, and he has so many debts that he even owes money to his grandfather.