‘Pharma Bro’ Martin Shkreli Jailed After Seeking a Hair From Hillary Clinton
Wow. All it took for Martin Shkreli to be jailed was a weird post about Hillary Clinton. So, obviously, if there’s one good thing to come out of her losing the 2016 election, it’s this.
Martin Shkreli is the former pharmaceutical exec nicknamed “Pharma Bro” who is awaiting sentencing for a fraud conviction. He was sent to jail on Wednesday after a federal judge revoked his bail because he’d offered $5,000 for a strand of Hillary Clinton’s hair.
Shkreli was free on $5 million bail while he awaited sentencing. He made two Facebook posts offering cash to anyone who could “grab a hair” from Clinton during her book tour.
His online offer last week prompted prosecutors to request that his bail be revoked. “On HRC’s book tour, try to grab a hair from her,” he wrote, referring to Clinton. “Will pay $5,000 per hair obtained from Hillary Clinton.”
Although Shkreli edited the post to say that he had meant it to be satirical, prosecutors contended there was a risk that one of Shkreli’s social media followers would take the post seriously and act on it.
Shkreli’s lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, argued that his client was not violent and that the post had been “a momentary lapse in judgment.”
“Stupid doesn’t make you violent,” Brafman said, adding that his client’s Facebook posts had shown “immaturity, satire, a warped sense of humor.”
But Judge Kiyo A. Matsumoto was unmoved. “What is funny about that?” she responded. “He doesn’t know who his followers are.”
Judge Matsumoto said that Shkreli’s post could be perceived as a true threat. “That is a solicitation to assault in exchange for money that is not protected by the First Amendment,” she said.
After the hearing, two deputy United States marshals led Shkreli to a holding cell adjoining the courtroom. He will be held at a federal jail in Brooklyn.