Usain Bolt is reportedly missing millions of dollars after funds vanished from the eight-time Olympic champion’s investment accounts.
The track and field icon’s manager, Nugent Walker, has claimed that Jamaica’s Financial Investigations Division and Financial Services Commission has launched an investigation.
Bolt, still a world recorder holder at 100m and 200m since retiring in 2017, was first alerted to the issue when he spotted discrepancies with his accounts on January 11.
”All the relevant steps have been taken to come to the bottom of this,” Walker claims while speaking to the Gleaner.
“He’s been with this entity over 10 years... His entire portfolio is being reviewed.”
Lawyers for Bolt then confirmed on Wednesday (January 18) that more than $12.7 million is missing from his account. Attorney 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.
“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 attorneys 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 has said that it 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.
“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,” he said.
Bolt’s management company did not reply when approached for comment by The Independent.
Now 36 years of age, Bolt has been retired for almost seven years, but remains active with yearly appearances at the Unicef celebrity charity football match Soccer Aid.
His earning potential remains high after pulling in $33 million in 2016 alone through prize money, appearances fees and sponsorship, where he once signed the largest-ever deal in track and field with Puma.
Bolt was also ranked as the 45th richest athlete in the world as recently as 2018, by Forbes Magazine, having accumulated $31 million (£25.3 million) across the final 12 months of his last competitive year on the track.
Bolt established himself as one of the greatest athletes of all time across any sport.
He achieved an unprecedented feat of winning three consecutive Olympic gold medals in the men’s 100 metres and 200m from Beijing 2008 to Rio 2016.
He was denied a hat-trick of men’s 4x100m relay golds after triumphs at London 2012 and Rio 2016 due to Jamaica being stripped of their Beijing 2008 success after Nesta Carter returned a positive doping test.
Additional reporting by Associated Press