Shakur estate moves against songs' sale
Tupac Shakur's mother is seeking to prevent his former label, Death Row Records Inc., from selling the late rapper's unreleased recordings as part of a bankruptcy settlement.
Afeni Shakur sought an injunction in federal bankruptcy court Friday claiming Death Row was attempting to sell Shakur material that belonged to the rapper's estate.
Unreleased recordings should have been turned over to the estate as part of a 1997 agreement with the record label, said attorney Donald N. David, who represents the estate.
But during Death Row's bankruptcy proceedings, "it was revealed that an album's worth of unreleased Tupac material was being advertised to potential buyers as the jewel in the crown of the Death Row assets," David said.
Afeni Shakur and the company she established, Amur Entertainment, requested an injunction after the label failed to confirm the songs would not be included in the bankruptcy settlement, David said.
The court was expected to consider the request within a month when it decides whether to permit the label to release an album with the unreleased tracks to help pay off its debts, David said.
A call to Ronald L. Leibow, an attorney representing Death Row in bankruptcy proceedings, was not immediately returned Monday.
In the 1990s, Death Row was home to superstar rappers such as Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre, as well as Shakur.
The label's fortunes — and those of its owner, Marion "Suge" Knight — started to slide when Shakur was shot and killed in 1996 while riding in the passenger seat of Knight's car.
The shooting took place after the pair were involved in a fight in a Las Vegas hotel. The attack resulted in Knight being sent to prison for violating his parole.
After Shakur's death, Death Row and the rapper's family settled for an undisclosed sum amid allegations that the label had defrauded Shakur, David said.
Knight sought bankruptcy protection for himself and the company in April 2006. He claimed debts of more than $100 million in each filing.
At the time, Knight estimated personal assets of zero to $50,000. Last month, the rap mogul placed his seven-bedroom, 9 1/2-bath home on the market for $6.2 million as part of his financial overhaul.