Olympic champion Usain Bolt is reportedly missing millions of dollars after funds from his investment accounts disappeared. The track and field runner’s manager, Nugent Walker, has said that Jamaica’s Financial Investigations Division and Financial Services Commission has launched an investigation.
Whilst speaking to The Gleaner, Walker said: “All the relevant steps have been taken to come to the bottom of this.”
While Bolt himself hasn’t directly addressed the reports, he did share a cryptic post on Twitter on Monday (16 January) which fans and followers have assumed is about the news.
“In a World of Lies.. Where is the Truth? The History Evil… What is the Root?... Money,” he wrote.
This is what you need to know.
Lawyers for the retired sprinter have said that more than $12.7 million (£10.3 million) has gone missing from Bolt’s account with a private investment firm in Jamaica that authorities are investigating.
Lawyer Linton P. Gordon provided The Associated Press with a copy of a letter sent to Stocks & Securities Limited demanding that the money be returned. Gordon said Bolt’s account once had $12.8 million but now reflects a balance of only $12,000 dollars (£9,724).
“If this is correct, and we are hoping it is not, then a serious act of fraud larceny or a combination of both have been committed against our client,” Bolt’s lawyers say in the letter.
They threaten civil and criminal action if the money is not returned within 10 days.
Stocks & Securities Limited did not immediately respond to a request for comment. On its website, the company asked that clients direct all urgent queries to Jamaica’s Financial Services Commission, which is investigating the firm.
The company said: “We understand that clients are anxious to receive more information and assure you that we are closely monitoring the matter throughout all the required steps and will alert our clients of the resolution as soon as that information is available.”
It added that the company discovered the fraud earlier this month and that several of its clients may be missing millions of dollars.
Jamaica’s finance minister, Nigel Clarke, called the situation alarming but noted it was unusual.
He said: “It is tempting to doubt our financial institutions, but I would ask that we don’t paint an entire hard-working industry with the brush of a few very dishonest individuals.”
Bolt’s lawyers sent the letter Monday, the same day that Jamaica’s Financial Services Commission announced it was appointing a special auditor to look into fraud allegations at Stocks & Securities Limited, which is based in the capital of Kingston.
On Tuesday, financial authorities said they were assuming temporary management of the private investment firm. It is allowed to keep operating but needs approval from the government for any transactions.
What is Usain Bolt’s net worth?
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Bolt boasts a net worth of $90 million.
Bolt is considered to be one of the greatest sprinters of all time, and is the record holder for the 100 metres, 200 metres and 4 x 100 metres relay. As an eight time Olympic gold medallist, Bolt claimed the title of being the highest paid athlete in the history of the sport.
In August 2016, Forbes reported that Bolt had made $32.5 million in earnings over the last 12 months from things like appearances, prize money and sponsors - which clocked in at roughly 10 times what his fellow track and field athletes like Mo Farah made.
Even after his retirement in 2017, Bolt continued to rake in millions in sponsorships and business deals, including with Puma - which reportedly continues to pay him $10 million every year.