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Jay Z vs. Court

Jay Z
2 minute read

Speaking of 99 problems, it was 1999 when Jay started Rocawear with his business partner. It was named to match Roc-A-Fella Records, which they co-own with another partner.

Rocawear was off to a good start and by 2007 its revenue had reached an impressive $700 million. That year, the rights to the brand were sold to a company named Iconix Brand Group for $204 million. Jay still retained his part ownership in the company and continued to work on marketing and development.

Trouble started when the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) subpoenaed Jay in November 2017. Jay was called to testify about Iconix because of their alleged violations of SEC rules surrounding financial reporting.

Jay has still not appeared in court. His lawyers have argued that since he was not part of the Iconix company, he should not be bothered. On top of that, his lawyers stated that his busy touring schedule would not allow him to appear. Amusingly, the tour was called the On the Run. It’s hard to say if this was coincidence, a publicity stunt, or a great inside joke. Regardless of why, it’s perfect. Jay has stayed “on the run” for about 5 months since the date that the subpoena told him to appear.  

As you might expect, Jay’s absence has not pleased the court. U.S. District Judge Paul Gardephe is presiding over the case. In response to Jay skillfully dodging the appearance, Judge Gardephe has said:

“This testimony has been delayed for five months and I do not intend to tolerate any more delays.”

Jay is supposed to appear on May 15th next, when we will see if he shows up or not. If he doesn’t, perhaps he will finally round it off to a clean 100 problems.

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