Rapper 50 Cent is learning that lesson the hard way. Fitty declared bankruptcy in July after being hit with $30 million in court judgments, including a $7 million settlement over his unauthorized release of a rival rapper's girlfriend in a sex tape and $18 million he owes due to a failed headphone endorsement deal. That hasn't slowed the rapper's roll, however.
A series of the rapper's Instagram photos show him relaxing on bed with piles of cash — including one bundle tucked provocatively in a sensitive area of his pants — and spelling out the word "BROKE" with what appear to be stacks of $100 bills.
The rapper's conspicuous display of Benjamins in his Instagram photos has upset Judge Ann Nevins, who called Fitty out in a Hartford, Connecticut bankruptcy court. According the Wall Street Journal, the judge intimated that the pictures suggest that 50 Cent — whose legal name is Curtis Jackson — had been hiding assets from the court to avoid paying the legal settlements.
“I’m concerned about allegations of nondisclosure and a lack of transparency in the case,” Judge Nevins said at a hearing Thursday, according to the Journal. “There’s a purpose of having a bankruptcy process be transparent, and part of that purpose is to inspire confidence in the process.”
The rapper's lawyers responded that it is part of 50 Cent's branding and image to appear to be rolling in cash, according the Journal. Many of 50 Cent's Instagrams feature bottles of Effen Vodka, which is one of his endorsement deals and brands itself as "an ultra-premium vodka."
Since the barrage of cash-inflected pictures last year, it does look like 50 Cent is scaling back somewhat in his social media campaign to look rich. Four weeks ago, he posted a picture of buckets full of money, but they appeared to be only $20s.
And in a Valentine's Day post, he regrammed a picture from Rich People Flex of a box of chocolates with much more modest denominations of $1, $5 and $10.
Either way, 50 Cent will have to appear in court to answer the judge's request for more information, although no date has yet been set.