Suge Loses Death Row

A federal judge July 7th ordered a bankruptcy trustee to take over Suge Knight’s Death Row Records, saying the label has been grossly mismanaged.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Ellen Carroll made the ruling as part of the proceedings begun when Knight filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in April claiming debts of more than $100 million.

The judge said the label’s accounting practices were a mess and noted that the rap mogul previously testified he hadn’t looked at the financial statements in 10 years.

“It seems apparent there is no one at the helm,” Carroll said, adding there appeared to be gross mismanagement, which left the company vulnerable for the court to take control.

Knight testified May 5th during a federal bankruptcy hearing in Los Angeles that his jail time in 1996 and 2003 – both on parole violations – hampered the label’s progress. The label had been home to hit records by Snoop Dogg, Tupac Shakur and Dr. Dre.

He also testified that the label’s end came after he lost a $107 million judgment to former associate Linda Harris last year.

Harris said she and her former husband, Michael Harris, who is doing time for dealing drugs, helped start the rap music empire. Michael Harris claimed he put up $1.5 million to start the label, which Knight repeatedly denied.