We’ve all heard countless stories of businessmen going bankrupt and losing the will to put in the effort to turn their lives around. However, it may surprise you to know how many billionaires have served time in jail.
Famous names — including Steve Madden, Billy McFarland, Tim Allen, and Martha Stewart— have faced imprisonment at various points. But many of them were found guilty after they made it big. So it’s not really surprising that they quickly managed to get back on their feet.
But what if we alter the sequence of events a little bit? Would you expect anyone to make something good of their life if they have spent considerable time in jail?
More often than not, people believe that a jail term implies that the person is forever lost in the world of crime. But that does not necessarily have to be true. People do get opportunities to turn their life around, even in real life.
Three Stories of Success After Jail Time
There are actually many businessmen who had served time in jail before they made it big. But we are going to share the success stories of three of them. This will be enough to tell you that it’s never too late to get your life back on track.
1. Mark Wahlberg
Although he is mainly known as an actor, Mark Wahlberg is actually a pretty successful businessman too. Did you know that he has a film and TV production company called Closest to the Hole? He’s also the owner of a water company, Aquahydrate, and a nutrition company called Performance Inspired.
Not only that, he owns a chain of gyms called f45 and over 50 burger franchises called Wahlburgers. His clothing company, Municipal, is pretty successful, too. And he also runs four car dealerships, Mark Wahlberg Auto Group. Unrealistic Ideas, another TV production company, was also founded by him.
He is undoubtedly pretty successful. But that wasn’t always the case. Surprisingly, Wahlberg began a life of crime from quite an early age. He was stealing and selling drugs when he was 14. He even faced court for mouthing racial slurs and rocks.
Wahlberg severely beat a Vietnamese man at the age of 16, which earned him some jail time. And it was during this period that he decided to mend his ways. He found faith, which encouraged him to reform and do better.
Needless to say, things turned out pretty well for him once he committed to turning his life around. Today, Wahlberg hopes to help other entrepreneurs achieve their dreams as he shares his tips on an HBO docuseries titled Wahl Street. Sounds incredible, doesn’t it?
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2. Dr. Dre
Dr. Dre, whose real name is Andre Young, is quite well-recognized, not to mention a successful entrepreneur.
But his past will surprise you. Police arrested him in 1992 after being involved in a brawl in a New Orleans hotel where he had allegedly assaulted a police officer. And this was only the beginning. He was later charged with assaulting another producer. A female TV host once sued him for assault.
Ultimately, the authorities arrested him two years later. He led police on a chase to avoid capture. This earned him a jail sentence of eight months.
No one would expect a young and violent rapper who has spent time in jail to reform. But Dr. Dre proved to be an exception.
He matured, focused on his music, and started his own record label. But he hated how poor audio quality affected the impact of his music. Therefore, he decided to take matters into his own hands and use his entrepreneurship skills to come up with a solution.
He created a high-quality, albeit expensive product, partnering with Jim Iovine. And this is how he launched Beats Electronics. Additionally, Beats Company also launched Beats Music. This steaming service gave tough competition to Spotify and Apple Music.
The business became a raging success which is why Apple eventually acquired it at a high price, a whopping $3 million. Beats Electronics was that much of a competitor to Apple. There has been no turning back for Dr. Dre once he mended his ways. The world now knows him as a record producer, rapper, and reputed businessman.
3. Kevin Mitnick
People in the software world know this guy. Kevin Mitnick had been getting into trouble from a pretty young age. He got his first jail sentence at the age of 16 when he hacked into a computer network and stole software.
He didn’t really think of giving up his illegal ways, even then. Indeed, he resumed the same activities that had gotten him into trouble soon after his release. Metnick spent three years on the run. The FBI even placed him on their most wanted list.
Authorities found Metnick guilty of hacking into 40 organizations at the time of his arrest. In fact, he was the most famous hacker of his time. Not surprisingly, the judge sentenced him to a jail term of five years.
Can you imagine this guy leaving the life of crime behind? But he did. Eventually, he decided to mend his ways and turn his life around. He realized he could use his skills for a better purpose.
Consequently, he launched Mitnick Security. The company offers security advice and consultation. It has worked with more than 500 companies and governments to date. Mitnick who was once a fugitive is now among the most trusted, not to mention revered “white hat” penetration testers.
Changing Life for the Better After Jail
Just because someone has been indicted and served time in jail does not mean it’s the end of the road for him.
It’s all about making that initial decision to change. If someone pledges to reform, nothing can stop that person.
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