Rapper Shyne has had
all profits from his album Godfather: Buried Alive frozen under a New
York law the bars convicted offenders from profiting off of crimes they have committed.
A Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice cited the “Son of Sam
Law” and ruled that any money Shyne makes from his deal with Island Def
Jam must be held in an escrow account, due to civil lawsuits filed by the victims
of a 1999 club shooting that left several people wounded.
The “Son of Sam” law was enacted in 1977 by the
New York State Legislature. The law states that any criminal offender that enters
into a contract to receive profits from the retelling of their crime, must hand
over the funds to the state to benefit the offenders victims.
The law was originally enacted to prevent convicted murderer
David Berkowitz from making money off of his story, while victims and family
members suffered from the publicity.
Shortly after New York enacted the law, 42 additional states
and the federal government invoked similar laws.
Def Jam signed the former Bad Boy Entertainment artist to a
$3 million dollar deal and released Godfather Buried Alive after Shyne
was convicted for the shooting.
Shyne was sentenced to serve 10 years in June of 2001, after
a dramatic trial that saw the acquittal of Bad Boy Worldwide CEO Sean “P.
During the trial, Shyne admitted that he fired a gun, but said
that it was in self defense.
“I never meant to hurt nobody, I was afraid for my life,"
Shyne told the Judge at his sentencing. "I’m [asking] for mercy [and for
you] not to waste my life."
“It’s a tragedy all around," the judge said before
sentencing Shyne to the 10-year stretch. "This is a young man who had a
A lawyer for one of the victims that was shot in the face went
to court last fall to have Shyne’s assets frozen, after learning the rapper
had already received a $500,000 cash advance for his services.
Def Jam released
Godfather Buried Alive in August of 2004. The rapper was planning a
new album that included production from Kanye West, the Alchemist and Just Blaze.