Shilo Sanders Faces Scrutiny Over Income Disclosure Amid Bankruptcy Filing Linked To $11.8 Million Judgment

Shilo Sanders, the son of Colorado head coach Deion Sanders, is now facing additional scrutiny after questions surrounding his income have surfaced following his filing for bankruptcy in late 2023.

The bankruptcy filed followed an $11.8 million judgment against him that was tied to an assault. Sanders lost a civil lawsuit in 2022 related to an alleged assault on a security guard at his Dallas high school in 2015. A lawsuit filed in Dallas District Court in 2016 claimed that the security guard, John Darjean, had “sustained severe and permanent injuries, including a broken neck, damage to his cervical spine, permanent neurological injuries, and irreversible incontinence,” according to a 2024 filing in the bankruptcy proceedings. These injuries were allegedly caused when Sanders elbowed and continued to hit Darjean during an altercation.

Sanders seemed to file the bankruptcy to absolve the debt. But now his bankruptcy filing is being called into question.

According to Yahoo, Sanders claimed in December 2023 to only have $323,477, which primarily consisted of a Robinhood account and a Mercedes GLE AMG 63, valued at $75,000. The amount he claimed in December was down from the account Sanders claimed in October, which was $477,881. 

Lawyers for John Darjean, a former security guard at Triple A Academy, the school branch of the Focus Academies charter school, which has since closed, have taken umbrage with the lack of disclosure of Shilo Sanders’ NIL portfolio. According to a January 2024 court filing, “Contrary to the schedules, Shilo has admitted acquiring vast amounts of high-end and expensive clothing,” the filing reads. “For example, on his YouTube Channel posted on May 4, 2023, he states, ‘Alright we at the Louis (Vuitton) Store I am trying to spend at least $50,00.00 today.’”

According to Westword, none of the items Sanders routinely displays on his social media accounts were included in his earnings discourse, to which his attorneys replied that Sanders is not obligated to itemize his personal property. 

Darjean’s filing further scrutinizes Sanders’ claim not to know what his role is in ventures referred to as SS21 LLC or Big 21 LLC aside from being the sole owner of them and that they are designed to contract paid appearances for his NIL ventures. 

“On the surface, this omission is as glaring as it is preposterous because it is Shilo’s very NIL value and/or public value that are the source of the non-stop paid engagements and social media appearances,” the filing says. “The entire underpinning of the NIL concept is the value of the individual athlete, but Shilo chose not only to hide the value of the entire NIL endeavor with the ‘unknown’ listings for the two of the entities that were disclosed (Big 21 LLC and/or SS21 LLC), but Shilo intentionally failed to identify and disclose his individual NIL property interest anywhere in the schedules.”

The filing also refers to Sanders’ NIL portfolio as the most lucrative and highly valued of Sanders’ assets; Sanders, meanwhile, asserts in his own filing that Darjean’s filings amount to a violation of the protective order issued by the State of Texas. 

According to USA Today, lawyers for Sanders have also argued that he was unaware of the initial trial and was not made aware of the judgment against him until 2023, claiming that notices for the trial either never reached Sanders or were sent to the incorrect address and that he didn’t have a lawyer at the time of the initial suit. 

In February, Sanders’ lawyers argued that the $11.3 million judgment represented an undue burden on their client, writing in court documents, “Given the size of the judgment and the fact that Shilo was an undergraduate college student looking towards graduate programs, the creation of a post-judgment receivership would have a permanent effect on his ability to start his life after graduation, and would likely result in the Debtor (Sanders) remaining subject to collection efforts from the Plaintiff for the rest of his life.”

The filing added, “As a result, the Debtor filed his voluntary petition for relief pursuant to Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code to allow him to get a fresh start, free from the oppressive burden of his debts.”

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