Will the latest allegations against Russell Simmons affect his net worth? The mogul is facing more sexual harassment and rape accusations. And he may face more claims in the months to come.
Over the past week, more women have come forward with shocking allegations against the Def Jam founder. The New York Times posted an article where three women accused him of rape during the 1980s and 1990s. A fourth claimed he sexually assaulted her as recently as 2014.
Five more women then told similar sexual harassment stories to the Los Angeles Times. One of those women accused Simmons of rape, as well.
These allegations came after two other women — model Keri Claussen Khalighi and writer Jenny Lumet — publicly accused Simmons of sexual harassment. Following the Lumet allegations last month, Simmons stepped down from leadership roles in his various business. His companies include men's clothing line Argyleculture, yoga lifestyle brand Tantris, energy drink Celsius, production company Def Pictures, and several charitable organizations.
Of course, even though Russell Simmons has stepped down from these companies, he could still make money off of them. But it is unclear just how successful these businesses really are. Billboard noted that no one has called for a boycott of Argyleculture despite the rape allegations, perhaps because few know the brand exists.
Still, Simmons already has an insanely high net worth after selling some of his earlier business ventures. He previously sold his stake in Def Jam for around $100 million. His urban clothing line Phat Fashions sold for another $140 million in 2004. And earlier this year, he sold his pre-paid debit card company for $147 million. He also earned money from producing The Nutty Professor and several TV series and specials.
In fact, Russell Simmons has an estimated net worth of $340 million. So as long as he has invested well, he will likely continue his lavish lifestyle.
But the big question mark is whether Simmons will face any expensive legal consequence over the rape allegations. He is already being investigated by the NYPD. And he could face lawsuits from some of his alleged victims, though the statute of limitations will affect some cases.
Of course, more allegations could still emerge. Already, Simmons' repeated denials have encouraged another alleged victim, Kelly Cutrone, to come forward. After Simmons attempted to start the #NotMe hashtag in response to the accusations, the former America's Next Top Model judge told Page Six that Simmons tried to rape her in 1991.
“The #NotMe thing? I’m going to do a #YeahYou,” she added. “F–k you.”
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