Tupac Shakur: An Update on His Sister’s Lawsuit Against Estate’s Trustee

As Tupac Shakur’s current museum exhibit continues to travel the country, his sister’s lawsuit against his estate’s trustee marches on. The Juice star’s sister says she’s been left out of important decision-making regarding the estate. She also accuses the trustee of embezzlement.

Tupac Shakur in 1994; his sister is suing the trustee's estate
Tupac Shakur | Bob Berg/Getty Images

Tupac Shakur’s sister sued amid his highly anticipated museum exhibit opening, alleging embezzlement, and asked for accounting records to be handed over

The museum is currently traveling across the country and has been well received. Before its opening, his sister Sekyiwa filed a lawsuit against the estate manager, Tom Whalley, who inherited the estate after inheriting his mother Afeni’s estate after her death in 2016. He was a close business associate of Tupac’s who worked with him since the start of his career after discovering him in 1991.

But according to Sekiwya, Whalley has embezzled more than $5 million. She noted in her filing that there are personal items of her brother that belong to her, but they are in the museum and without her approval. Whalley admits that there are items, but they are being used on display at the museum for revenue. He also says the museum is Afeni’s vision that he was finally able to bring to life.

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Sekyiwa’s name appears twice in the museum. Her lawyer, L. Londell McMillan says while the museum is great, the way Whalley excited it without Sekyiwa’s involvement is not. 

“It looks like [the museum] was done very well, highly curated with a lot of Set’s personal property,” McMillan told the LA Times. McMillian also represented Prince and Michael Jackson before their deaths. “It’s a sweet and sour situation. It’s great that people get to learn and see Tupac more, but the timing, presentation, and curation of it should have included Set, with her personal belongings being included in the installation,” he added.

His trustee denies any embezzlement but hasn’t handed over the accounting records

A judge agreed with Sekyiwa to some degree because Whalley was told to turn over an accounting record of Tupac’s estate. Whalley was ordered to produce a full accounting of the trust by June 30. But he failed to do so per Sekyiwa’s standards.

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Rolling Stone reports that Sekyiwa and her lawyers said the accounting record he provided “falls woefully short of compliance with the legal and accounting requirements of the trust.” They explain that Whalley’s figures are for “very general categories” of assets, listing jewelry valued at $217,700 without any catalog of the items. “Either (Whalley) lacks the capacity or the will to properly account to petitioners, or else he has something to hide,” Sekyiwa’s lawyers wrote in their response.

Sekyiwa and her lawyers now request an “independent” CPA to audit the trust and provide a full detailed accounting report. The trust includes Amaru Entertainment, the record label started by Afeni that controls much of Tupac’s music and intellectual property. The trust wholly owns Amaru, but Whalley runs it and is paid as its boss. Sekyiwa and her lawyers want to know how much Whalley pays himself through Amaru – and how much he has received to date since being the trustee. 

Sekyiwa Shakur says Tom Whalley has received an excessive amount of money from the estate as a trustee

In Sekyiwa’s lawsuit, she claims that Whalley has received $5.5 million in the last five years alone from Amaru Entertainment. She says in her filing the amount is “well in excess of what would be reasonably necessary to retain a properly qualified third-party to perform such services.”

But Whalley’s team believes otherwise. “Over the last five years, Amaru has increased in value by tens of millions of dollars as a direct result of Tom’s sound judgment and business acumen,” his filings state. A hearing in the trust battle is scheduled for Aug. 10.

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