NEW YORK: 50 Cent may put on the lavish lifestyle of a rap tycoon, but he says the bling-bling is all returned to the store.
The rapper, who has filed for bankruptcy as he faces potentially huge penalties in a lawsuit over a sex tape, has testified in court that his ostentatious displays of wealth are all a show.
50 Cent, whose real name is Curtis James Jackson III, said that his flashy cars and jewelry were all borrowed and that his own possessions included a Casio rather than Rolex watch, according to reports from Tuesdayâ€™s court session in New York.
â€œItâ€™s like music videos, they say action and you see all these fancy cars but everything goes back to the dealership,â€ he was quoted saying by the New York Post tabloid.
The New York Daily News said 50 Cent told the court that he did not place a US$1.6 million bet on boxer Floyd Mayweatherâ€™s fight against Manny Pacquiao, despite publicly claiming to do so.
50 Cent said in a statement to the court that he is worth $4.4 million, even though Forbes magazine earlier this year estimated his wealth at $155 million.
The rapper is seeking bankruptcy protection, which could shield him from payouts, after a jury ordered him to pay US$5 million to a woman who appeared in a sex tape that went online in 2009. 50 Cent â€“ posing in a wig as his alter ego Pimpinâ€™ Curly â€“ narrates the womanâ€™s sexual encounter and mocks fellow rapper Rick Ross, her ex-partner.
50 Cent reportedly apologized in court to the woman, who could seek far more money in the form of punitive damages.
50 Cent, who lives in a Connecticut mansion once owned by boxer Mike Tyson, is best known for the album and movie â€œGet Rich or Die Tryinâ€™.â€
He has also been an active businessman who earned an estimated US$100 million in 2007 by selling a stake in energy drink VitaminWater and has invested in mining in South Africa.
But last year he was ordered to pay US$16 million to Sleek Audio after being accused of leaking its trade secrets. -AFP