50 Cent Ordered To Pay $16.1 Million Settlement To Sleek Audio

50Cent

Hip-hop mogul 50 Cent’s bank account recently took a major hit in a court case when he was ordered to pay an earphone manufacturer more than $16.1 million in connection with a failed partnership to produce the entertainer’s line of headphones.

50 Cent, aka Curtis Jackson III, invested $1 million into Sleek Audio in a partnership to create a headphone line, but in 2011 he parted ways with the company. In the court documents it’s revealed that he thought they weren’t producing results quickly enough.

After severing ties with the company, the rapper went on to promote his SMS Audio Sync by 50 Cent headphones.

His new business venture did not sit well with the company. According to Sleek, 50 Cent backed out of the deal and stole their high-tech design to make his own headphones. The company claims Sync design was “basically the same design, mechanically,” in court documents. They also accused 50 Cent’s assistants of hacking a Sleek website, pulling confidential information including private client information, potential customers’ email addresses and other data.

The company sued the Queens-bred rapper for “misappropriating trade secrets, breaching his fiduciary duty owed to Sleek, participating in a civil conspiracy, breaching his confidentiality agreement with Sleek, and being unjustly enriched.”

After a three-year battle, the courts sided with Sleek awarding the company $11,693,247 in damages last May, and another $4,488,331 in attorney fees was just signed off on.

50  Cent has been battling the ruling for the last year to get out of paying additional fees, but the everything was made final this week, bringing the grand total of the payout to  $16,181578.

The founders of Sleek “did not have a good head for business,” the arbitrator wrote in the final statement. “Thus the arbitrator can sympathize with Jackson’s growing frustration that he was putting money into Sleek and not, in his opinion, seeing the results that he assumed would be forthcoming on a timely basis. Likewise, the arbitrator can appreciate the [Sleek team’s] frustration with what they perceived to be Jackson’s team taking control of their company … However, Jackson’s frustrations do not justify the actions he took or were taken on his behalf …”

(Photo Credit: Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)