Last month, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) filed a federal tax lien against “Pharma Bro” Martin Shkreli, claiming he the government over $4.6 million in back taxes, according to a report by Gawker. The entrepreneur, hedge fund manager, and former pharmaceutical CEO reportedly owes the IRS $4,628,928.55, to be exact.
Apparently, Shkreli didn’t pay $3,431.85 in taxes from 2013, and a staggering $4,625,496.70 from the 2014 tax year. Gawker quoted alleged text from the lien, which was prepared on December 18, 2015 and filed with the Office of the City Register on January 11, 2016.
“We are giving a notice that taxes (including interest and penalties) have been assessed against the following-named taxpayer,” the document states. “We have made a demand for payment of this liability, but it remains unpaid. Therefore, there is a lien in favor of the United States on all property and rights to property belonging to this taxpayer for the amount of these taxes, and additional penalties, interest, and costs that may accrue.”
Mr. Shkreli, 32, has been a flamboyant figure in recent months. He is currently also facing securities fraud and wire fraud charges in Brooklyn after being arrested by the FBI, as The New York Times reported. Called “the most hated man in America,” the Times summed up his major headlines up until this point.
“He said he would sharply increase the cost of a drug used to treat a potentially deadly parasitic infection. He called himself ‘the world’s most eligible bachelor’ on Twitter and railed against critics in a live-streaming YouTube video. After reportedly paying $2 million for a rare Wu-Tang Clan album, he goaded a member of the hip-hop group to ‘show me some respect.'”
Earlier in February, federal prosecutors disclosed information about the assets that Shkreli used to post his $5 million bail, specifically one of the E-trade brokerage accounts initially worth about $45 million, which had shrunk considerably to less than $5 million. This alarming drop of over $40 million from his trading account may have to do with a Ponzi-like scheme to defraud investors and a severe drop in share value after the indictment, according to another report by the New York Times.
“Much of the decline in the E-Trade account is a result of the collapse in the price of shares of KaloBios Pharmaceuticals, another company that Mr. Shkreli briefly led, authorities said. The stock, once valued at more than $30 a share, is trading at around $2. KaloBios fired Mr. Shkreli after he was indicted, and the company filed for bankruptcy in late December.
Days before Mr. Shkreli was arrested, KaloBios raised about $8 million from a group of investors in a private placement of stock. Some of the investors in that offering, called private investment in public equity, are suing in United States Bankruptcy Court for the return of their money, claiming they were misled by the company and Mr. Shkreli.”
A U.S. District Judge told Shkreli he may have to post new assets to secure his bond. His new lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, has also insisted he stop talking to the media until all the criminal charges were resolved.
Curiously, just yesterday on Feb. 11, Shkreli posted a tweet offering Kanye West $10 million to sell his next album exclusively to him, apparently attempting to repeat his infamous purchase of the rare Wu-Tang Clan album.
— Martin Shkreli (@MartinShkreli) February 11, 2016
When Shkreli was arrested in December 2015, the FBI tweeted that they could not seize the one-of-a-kind Wu-Tang Clan album Once Upon a Time in Shaolin, which he paid $2 million for.
#Breaking no seizure warrant at the arrest of Martin Shkreli today, which means we didn't seize the Wu-Tang Clan album.
— FBI New York (@NewYorkFBI) December 17, 2015
Both Shkreli and his lawyer have declined to comment on the lien. The IRS has thus far not responded to a request for comment.
[Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images]