Aspiring YouTube Live star Martin Shkreli made an appearance at a federal hearing today to talk about his securities fraud charges. Except that, on the advice of his counsel, Martin Shkreli refused to talk at all—about anything.
When asked what his name was, what he would would say to the sick individuals who suddenly couldn’t afford a drug that might save their life, whether he thought he did anything wrong at all, Shkreli’s response was always the same: “On the advice of counsel I invoke my Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination, and respectfully decline to answer your question.”
Baffled, South Carolina Representative Trey Gowdy tried to explain to Shkreli that he was, in fact, making an ass of himself.
Do you also understand that you can waive your Fifth Amendment right? You gave an interview to a television station in New York, where if I understand it correctly, you couldn’t wait to come educate the members of Congress on drug pricing. And this would be a great opportunity to do it.... He didn’t have to be prodded to talk during that interview, and he doesn’t have to be prodded to tweet a whole lot. Or to show his life on that little webcam he’s got.
Gowdy then tried to ask Shkreli if he’d be willing to talk about anything—anything at all! His Wu-Tang album, for instance. “Is that the name of the group?,” Gowdy asked unsure.
To which Shkreli replied, “On the advice of counsel I invoke my Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination, and respectfully decline to answer your question.”
Shkreli, of course, looked like he was about to burst into laughter at any minute throughout the course of the hearing. And according to Business Insider, as soon as Shkreli left the room, his lawyer—who didn’t seem to fully understand the rules of the court in which he found himself—“said that his client had been unfairly singled out. Eventually, he said, people would come to realize that Shkreli is ‘not a villain, but a hero.’”
Shkreli, for his part, retweeted this after the hearing:
He seems very sorry for what he’s done.