R&B singer Ryan Leslie‘s decision to stand firm and not cough up $1 million to the man allegedly responsible for discovering his lost laptop a few years ago has reportedly cost him a Cadillac Escalade.
According to reports, serious action against Leslie has been taken in light of him holding out on the pricey reward.
Now he’ll have to rap about taking the bus. City marshals have seized cheapskate rapper Ryan Leslie’s pimped-out ride after he failed to fork over the $1 million reward he promised for the recovery of his lost laptop, sources and court papers state. The “fully loaded,” mint-condition Cadillac Escalade will go up for auction Monday, and the proceeds will go to a German man, Armin Augstein, who found the rapper’s lost laptop in a German park in 2010. Augstein sued in Manhattan federal court after Leslie refused to pay. The rapper claimed the laptop files, and those on an external hard drive, were damaged. A jury ordered Leslie to pay up last year, but he has so far coughed up only $5,000, court papers claim. (New York Post)
Despite the news sprouting online this weekend, the seize reportedly went down last month.
Leslie’s performances rake in hundreds of thousands of dollars, court documents say. Asked by lawyers where the money goes, the rapper fired back, “Probably in my pockets,” court papers state. In recent months, his firm, Les is More, earned more than $400,000, which he has used to buy himself food, bling and electronics, court documents and city sources state. Marshals seized his SUV on Aug. 8. No other property was taken. An ad for the upcoming auction says the SUV features power steering, power windows, DVD players and third-row seating. Leslie, known for his songs “Diamond Girl” and “Addiction,” could not be reached for comment at his home in the Financial District. (New York Post)
Back in January, reports claimed R. Les was expected to pay roughly $200,000 more on top of the $1 million he already owes the German plaintiff.
A Grammy-nominated rapper whose music files disappeared when his laptop was stolen was ordered to pay nearly $1.2 million to a German man who claims to have found the computer in a forest. “He made a second reward video and offered $1 million for just the intellectual property on the external hard drive and computer, the session files,” David DeStefano, Leslie’s attorney, told ABC News. “They’re different from just an MP3, MP3s are nothing for a producer or a studio engineer, they can’t do anything with them. They need the session files. These were his compositions.” On Friday, the court once again sided with Augstein and ordered Leslie to pay an additional $180,000 to Augstein for interest that accrued between when the laptop was found, in 2010, and when the decision came down from federal court in 2012. (ABC News)
Leslie’s attorney, David DeStefano, said he planned to fight the ruling.
DeStefano said he is hoping to file briefs for the appeal process soon. “This music was stolen from him,” DeStefano said. “That was it. That was his composition. Those were his files, and he was unable to release an album for two years. So as an artist he released two albums in 2009 and was nominated in 2009, and then he was not able to release an album for two years.” (ABC News)
Leslie has publicly addressed his legal woes during past concerts.
“And despite what the jury said, that million dollar reward is still out there for anybody who can return all my compositions to me. That’s why I never took the video off of YouTube. I never got anything back, but luckily God blessed me with talent and I could make some of the music over again, you know what I’m saying? … So I appreciate each and every one of y’all for your support tonight and for the future ’cause we gonna keep making this music and we gonna try to work something out with my man over in Germany – maybe he misunderstood – but this is a record off that album.” (Real Talk NY)