A federal judge ordered a bankruptcy trustee to takeover Suge Knight’s Death Row Records on Friday (July 7), citing “gross mismanagement” as the cause.
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Ellen Carroll ruled that the label’s accounting practices were in “disarray,” after noting that Knight testified that he hadn’t reviewed the company’s financial statements in almost a decade.
“It seems apparent there is no one at the helm,” Carroll said, according to the Associated Press
Although Knight (real name: Marion Knight) was not present at the hearing, his attorney, Daniel McCarthy, denied Caroll’s claims. McCarthy stated that the music mogul had renamed the label Tha Row and was currently negotiating a distribution deal for the label’s lucrative catalog, which includes music by Tupac Shakur, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre and Tha Dogg Pound, among others.
Knight and his label filed for protection under Chapter 11 of federal bankruptcy law in April. He also claims that he and Death Row are more than $100 million in debt, with Knight’s personal assets including a bank account holding $11, clothing worth $1,000, furniture and appliances valued at $2,000, and jewelry worth $25,000.
The bankruptcy filing put a halt to a state court action in which a former couple (Lydia Harris and her ex-husband Michael “Harry-O” Harris), who claim they helped found the label, were trying to collect a $107 million judgment from Knight.
Judge Caroll has authorized the appointed trustee of the label to liquidate the assets from the label to pay off creditors.