Jermaine Dupri is in the news again. To no surprise, however, it is due to another financial mishap. This time with one of his ex-business partners.
In January, Eddie Weathers filed a $1 million civil lawsuit against Jermaine Dupri for unpaid profits earned from a business they both owned. According to the court documents retained by RadarOnline, both men established Dieniahmar Music LLC in 2005. The name derived from the names of Dupri and Weather’s first born children. A year after the business was established, Dupri entered a co-publishing deal with EMI Music. Weathers says that Dupri told EMI, “he was the sole owner of Dieniahmar Music, when in fact he was not.”
Therefore, from 2006 to 2013, royalties were paid to Dupri and his business manager directly from EMI.
“On April 11, 2008, Weathers received a check from Mauldin’s new business manager…in the amount of $275,752.97 which represented two years of back pay royalties due Weathers,” the civil suit states.
Weathers claims that when Dupri hired a new business manager in 2011, Willie Carter, his payments ceased, or came late, or were just a fraction of what he was owed.
And when Dupri told Weathers he planned to sell Dieniahmar Music to EMI in April 2013, he claims he was promised a $238,000 cut — which he never got.
Weathers is suing Dieniahmar Music, Jermaine Mauldin, and Willie Carter for $250, 000 plus any other royalties owed. He is seeking $1 million.
In what may be the biggest lawsuit seen by the makers of the “Grand Theft Auto V” video game, one of the former cast members of VH1′s “Mob Wives” is playing no games when it come to her life.
According to the Examiner, Karen Gravano, the daughter Salvatore (Sammy the Bull) Gravano, has filed a $40 million lawsuit against the makers of the massively popular game, claiming her image and life story have been incorporated into the mafia-themed game without permission. Here’s the scoop:
The character that Karen believes is based on her is Antonia Bottino, whose father, former Gambetti family underboss Sammy (Sonny) Bottino, became a snitch. The online synopsis for the game states that Antonia and her family was forced to move from town to town to remain safe.
Karen’s own father, Salvatore (Sammy the Bull) Gravano, was a Gambino underboss who snitched, helping to bring down famed mob boss John Gotti.
In what may be the most obvious reference to Karen, the character Antonia is not allowed to join a TV show called “Wise B***hes.”
The former reality TV star wants $20 million in compensation and $20 million in punitive damages.
But, isn’t Grand Theft Auto an animated parody of some sorts? The game depicts the life of ball players, celebrities, etc and put them in game-life form. Is she mad because the makers didn’t ask for permission? Or nah?!
Celebrity hair stylist, Terrance Davidson, has filed a $30 million lawsuit against rapper Nicki Minaj. The news of the lawsuit is believed to be the first of its kind as it pertains to infringement of intellectual property. No one has every sued for wig/hair designs.
Davidson was hired in 2010 to be Minaj’s go-to guy for all of her big colorful wigs, which helped shaped her stardom into what it has become. But, Davidson’s says that before she fired him as an stylist in 2013, the two struck a deal to enter into the wig-making business.
Davidson claims that Minaj entered into the business and began selling his custom wig designs without his consent or knowledge. He says that she has went on and profited millions off the wigs and he hasn’t seen a dime of the proceeds.
“I actually hand-made these wigs,” Davidson said. “For me to see them in stores and not getting credit for them is upsetting.”
Davidson’s wig styles are being sold under company Pink Personality in stores and via the internet. Pink Personality is owned by Nicki Minaj, and it is being sued as well.
Minaj is being sued for stealing intellectual property and being unable to enter other business ventures (i.e. reality show) in anticipation of the two working together on the wig line.
Davidson is seeking $30 million in damages. Minaj’s camp has not yet released an official statement.
New details has surfaced regarding the popular Atlanta restaurant and bar, Bar One, which is being leased by “Real Housewives of Atlanta” cast member Peter Thomas (husband of Cynthia Bailey). STACKS Magazine got a bit of exclusive tea from Cynthia Bailey herself. But, Rodney Ho, of AJC, revealed new developments in the story that some may find interesting.
Back in late November 2013, Cynthia Bailey and I [Ms. Bels, publisher of STACKS Magazine] talked briefly about her business ventures and the status of Atlanta hot spot, Bar One. She explained that, although many rumors were swirling about the building being in foreclosure, the money issues were not due to Peter not paying their rent.
On the rumors surrounding the foreclosure of Bar One…
Oh, we are definitely having some issues with Bar One. It has nothing to do directly with Peter and I. Peter pays the rent for Bar One every month. But the landlord was not paying the bank. So there’s some issues going on. We pray that’s all going to be worked out in time. So just pray for us. We’re working it out. But again, we were doing what we was supposed to be doing. Life happens…
During our chat, she also insisted that Bar One is doing very well and that they were soon opening up a second location in Charlotte, NC. We have yet to hear the second restaurant’s grand opening. So, I wonder if that is still in the works. If so, hopefully Peter will negotiate a better lease agreement with its landlord. Because according to the news that hit the net today, it looks like Atlanta’s location is up in financial shambles and could potentially close very soon.
Here’s what AJC is reporting:
His landlord, Eloshua Elliott and Showtime Cafe, filed a complaint in Fulton County superior court saying Thomas owes more than $100,000. The charges: “defendant breached a lease agreement by failing to pay rent and other fees including late fees, bank charges, real estate property taxes and unpaid utilities.”
The lawsuit said Thomas hasn’t paid his rent of $10,000 a month since March, 2013 through the end of the year. (Late fees are another $5,000.)
Elliott also separately filed a complaint against Thomas’ entertainment group for the property across the street at 670 Memorial Drive which houses the Bailey Agency, Bailey’s modeling and talent company. There, he owes more than $29,000, the complaint said.
According to Peter, however, the landlords lawsuit is frivolous and that he’s being caught in between a second landlord that hasn’t been paying his share of the lease to the bank.
Peter Thomas, in an exclusive interview this afternoon, said the problem is his primary landlord Showtime Cafe for the Bar One property. (Elliott is partial land owner.) Prior to March, he said they had been taking his money for a year and not passing it on to the bank First Fidelity for the mortgage they owe. He said Showtime is in foreclosure proceedings and according to Loopnet, the property was auctioned off in October, 2013 but does not say to whom (Thomas’ attorney recommended he not release the names of the owners of Showtime.)
Starting last March, he started placing his rental payments in escrow with his attorney until Showtime straightened out its issues with its bank.
“I’ve been caught in the middle of the crossfire,” Thomas said. In reality, he has no problem financially paying his rent.
Believe me. I’m confused too by the situation. I’ve asked one of our investigative guys to dig up the foreclosure paperwork and see what the heck happened and who actually owns the properties.
Cynthia Bailey moved into the new property Industry Space at 670 Memorial Drive and the lease began in June, 2013, at a rate of $2,700 a month, according to the complaint related to that property.
Thomas said he is paying the bank directly for Industry Space and not Elliott. “I don’t owe them anything,” he said. He said the bank has no issue with him and he’s annoyed the landlord Elliott has tried to kick him out twice. He noted he spent more than $120,000 last year improving what had been an empty garage space.
In the Bar One filing, his lease ended Dec. 31, 2013 and has not been extended. He said he had a five-year option and the lease is set up so since he did not get a notice saying his lease is over, it was automatically extended. So he has remained and operates the bar normally in the interim.
His lease, signed in late 2010, has an escalated rent schedule that started at $2,500 a month in early 2011, jumped to $5,000 later in 2011, then $7,500 a month in 2012 and a whopping $10,000 a month last year.
The plaintiff is hoping that a judge grants him an immediate eviction.
Ok…here’s some additional tea.
Word is that their space across the street from Bar One, Industry Studios, didn’t quite live up to its standards for some of the tenants. As some of you know, the multi-use space also housed Derek Blanks Photography, The Bailey Agency School of Fashion, and Peter Thomas Entertainment. Well, an anonymous source stated that some of the tenants (eg. Derek Blanks Photography) is no longer there because of a “bunch of mess going on”. I, personally, have not been to Industry Studios, so I can’t confirm if DBP is there or not. What does “mess” entails? I don’t know.
Nevertheless, hopefully this is all just a misunderstanding or Peter Thomas is indeed being taken advantage of by this second mystery landlord. Bar One is a nice spot and the food is very good. So it will be a slight detriment to the Atlanta nightlife if it has to close its doors.
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS?
After a long battle against a former financial advisor, the courts have reached a favorable decision in Rihanna’s $35 million lawsuit.
Rihanna was awarded a judgement of $10 million, which both parties agreed upon. She originally sued Peter Gounis, of Berdon LLP, for millions she’d loss in failed ventures suggested by the accountant. Remember, in 2009, the pop singer announced that she was “effectively broke”. She also fired Mr. Gounis.
Rihanna claimed that in January 2009 she had $11 million. By December 2009, she had only $2 million left. Mr. Gounis, during that year, OK’d several large purchases such as the $7.5 million mansion in Beverly Hills, which later turned out to be a dud. The home was ridden with water leakage problems. Rihanna spent over $1 million in home repairs until finally deciding to sell it, which caused her a $2 million loss.
The court documents read: “Mr. Gounis was fully appraised of Ms. Fenty’s financial condition, yet, nonetheless, failed to advise her that the purchase would be unwise.” (Source: LatinaPost.com)
Rih Rih’s legal squad added that Berdon LLP also advised her (via email) to make the purchase(s) knowing that she was experiencing financial difficulties. The accounting firm also failed to warn her about a worldwide tour that was failing. The ticket sales were not turning over as forecast and the firm failed to warn her before the tour ended. She lost millions because of this as well.
Peter Gounis’s argument was that Rihanna’s frivilous spending on designer clothing and jewelry was the real reason why her millions faded away.
Although Rihanna won this case, this should be a lesson to anyone who hire someone to manage their finances.
When soliciting and securing financial services from a firm or individual, always be willing to take a second look at your money at all times. Most firms and advisors are scheduled to give you a full financial report once a month or each quarter (or as often as you specify). This gives you the opportunity to review your assets against your liabilities, determine if there’s money available for major purchases or investments, etc. Mr. Gounis, in this instance, should not have approved the purchase of that $7.5 million mansion. Rihanna only had $11 million in the account. So, why would anyone tell their client to spend over half of their entire savings? This should have been a red flag for Rihanna.
But like a lot of celebrities and athletes, many do not know how to manage a large amount of money. From once being poor to one day becoming a multi-millionaire, this can be very scary and mentally overwhelming. And when you are not educated on how to properly manage your finances, you will be more prone to throwing it away.
In her case, Rihanna trusted the wrong people. This brings us to another point: don’t be afraid to fire people when they are not doing their job! There’s nothing wrong with that. Just because a colleague referred their services, you don’t have to put up with their poor job. So, fire them quickly and look for a reputable accountant. Try several accountants if you have to. And in some cases, hold them accountable for any significant losses (i.e. insurance, earned value milestones, etc).
The key is to be proactive, not reactive. If you can prevent a loss from happening by just being prepared and aware, then stay on your sh*t at all times, make sure your accountant is doing their job, and keep your eyes on your money.
Photo Source: UrbanIslandz.com
The Ratchet Report: RHOA’s Mama Joyce Strikes Again, Crayton Explains Anti-Gay Tweet, & Rickey Smiley Trickin’ Off Into Debt??
RHOA Mama Joyce Strikes again and taking no Prisoners
Mama Joyce confronts Carmen again…. We have all watched and enjoyed the RHOA for several years. We have watched cast members come and go and build life long bonds, plus friendships that would not usually happen. We have the opportunities to see weddings, divorces, child births and the city of Atlanta get some good exposure. Most of all we have had the chance to see these women grow personally and professionally and “keep it real” all at the same time. The RHOA franchise has shown the world that wealthy people have the same challenges and issues everyday working class citizens have the only difference is the women in the show have just a little more cash flow.
This year the show took an unusual twist when Mama Joyce, the mother of RHOA star Kandi Burruss, expressed her thoughts about Kandi’s fiancé Todd. The last episode Mama Joyce was on sparked super ratings for the Bravo show because of the altercation she had with Kandi’s best friend and assistant Carmen. Well get ready because clips are circulating the web for the next episode and Mama Joyce is at it again. Carmen received some news about “the people in the streets” making accusations that Todd and Carmen were having a secret relationship behind Kandi’s back and confronted the person.
To Carmen’s surprise, Mama Joyce got wind of Carmen confronting the alleged person who happens to be Todd’s ex-girlfriend and left a threatening message on Carmen’s phone. Mama Joyce stated that she was not happy with Carmen confronting the alleged person and threatened to drag Carmen up and down the street.
I love Mama Joyce and think she is a fantastic woman, however, at a certain point in your life some things should be left alone – and this in my opinion is one.
Hide you kids hide your friends Mama Joyce is knocking out everybody or maybe just Carmen.
Patrick Crayton has to back track “there goes the NFL” tweets…
Patrick Crayton Twitter rants about Prospective NFL rookie Michael Sams announcement about being gay…. On Feb 9th Patrick Crayton responded to a tweet from ESPN’s Adam Schefter’s report about the projected mid-round NFL pick Michael Sam announcing being gay. Crayton replied with his beginning tweet “Oh wow!!! There goes the NFL!.” He later went to tweet, “trying to figure why announce and stay in the closet and keep, To urself!!!” Clayton later went on to try to clarify tweets after making such a dumb move and stated.
“A lot of people are mad because I said there goes the NFL,” Crayton tweeted. “I say that because now this young man is (going) to get all the wrong attention for his sexual choice and a lot of players and execs will get asked about playing with a gay guy and they are going to have to lie about how they really feel.
“This young man will come in with notoriety for announcing his sexual choice more then his ability to play the game he loves!!! This will be a major thing in football for yrs to come. So for all u guys cussing at me and calling me a bigot, a–hole or whatever, know where (expletive) I’m coming from before u do what u hate others to do when a situation like this is announced!!” (Source: www.dallasnews.com)
The world is filled with so much hate and scrutiny because a person is rich, poor, black, white, short, tall, skinny or fat, but no one is trying to embrace and love others for just being a human being. I applaud Michael Sams for having the guts to tell his truth and be happy with himself. I understand Crayton has his views and that’s also okay because this is America the land of the free and the brave and we all have our views and opinions. My suggestion however would be to embrace others and try to be more understanding.
In the words of the late Rodney King “Can’t we all just get along?”
Is Cash Flow Really Low for Comedian Ricky Smiley?
Former employee of Ricky Smiley calls former boss out…. We have all heard of the negative comments that terminated disgruntle ex-employees can make about previous employers. This time a former employee of comedian, actor and radio personality Ricky Smiley is talking to the press about his “debt” issues. The former employee stated that Ricky Smiley is up to his ears in IRS debt and back money owed to his previous manager. The former employee went on record stating that Smiley was a compulsive spender and made unnecessary purchases such as boats, cars and very expensive hotel rooms for call girls while on the road. The former employee stated that due to his spending habit and debt issues Smiley fired a lot of his staff and several others quit for various reasons. It was also stated from the former employee that Smiley’s CFO stated that Smiley would have to do live performances to supplement his monthly revenue according to www.celebnmusic247.com.
I’m not sure if this is true because of the source. But, if it is, my advice to Ricky is start booking and planning those shows because the IRS is outchea.
This week “Really Award” goes to my girl “Mama Joyce”. I know you mean well and want the best for your baby girl, but leave well enough alone and let that go. Kandi is a nice and intelligent woman and according to her net-worth, she is very smart… So no worries!
Was It Really Worth It? Michael Jackson Fans Awarded $1.74 for ‘Emotional Damage’ Due to Death of Pop Star
A French court recently sided with five die hard fans of the late Michael Jackson in a lawsuit against Dr. Conrad Murray. A total of 34 fans brought a case against the man accused of killing the pop star on claims that they suffered emotional stress after his death. But, out of the 34 individuals, only five proved their case.
The fans (two from France, two from Switzerland, and one from Belgium) was awarded only $1. 74 each. But, was suing Dr. Murray worth the dollars and time spent going to court? Uh, no.
The only real reason for this was to prove a point, apparently. And, their point was proved that it is possible to sue for emotional damage due to a strong connection with an idol/celebrity. According to the fans attorney, this is also the first known case of this action.
“As far as I know this is the first time in the world that the notion of emotional damage in connection with a pop star has been recognized,” the fans’ attorney, Emmanuel Ludot, told Agence France-Presse.
The symbolism of this case was the main goal of the fans. This was apparent because the fans didn’t request Dr. Murray to actually pay their awarded monies.
Why does it seem like each year around this time (Black History Month) the King kids are up and arms about his estate? *roll eyes*
According to news reports, Martin Luther King III and Dexter King has filed a lawsuit against their sister Bernice King over two of their father’s heirlooms. On Friday, in Fulton County Superior Court, the son’s filed a complaint requesting emergency injunction relief. Due to estate agreements, signed in 1995, all property of the Civil Rights leader was to be assigned – and turned over – to the Estate of Martin Luther King Jr Inc. Dexter and MLK III’s lawsuit documents claim that Bernice is in violation of that agreement. If found guilty, Bernice will be forced to hand over Dr. King’s Nobel Peace Prize and another sentimental possession, his “traveling” Bible.
Bernice insists that her brothers want to sell the items, which they informed her of a month ago.
“While I love my brothers dearly, this latest decision by them is extremely troubling. Not only am I appalled and utterly ashamed, I am frankly disappointed that they would even entertain the thought of selling these precious items. It reveals a desperation beyond comprehension,” Bernice King said. “Our Father MUST be turning in his grave.”
This is such a sad situation. Hopefully, the siblings can resolve this out of court and out of the public’s eye.
Photo Credit: SaportaReport
American Express has agreed to pay at least $75.7 million to stop an ongoing investigation into their identity theft protection service.
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) claims that AMEX tricked cardholders into purchasing the service that didn’t last for two-years as stated. In the product agreement, the identity theft protection would last up to two years. Cardholders who purchased the product only received one to three months of service. Also, consumers who hadn’t completed the enrollment process were charged for the service anyway.
AMEX has agreed to settle for $75.7 million. They have agreed to refund $59.5 million to its customers and $16.2 million in federal fines.
This is why it is very important to read your contract agreements carefully and pay close attention to your monthly statements. You never know when banks or credit card companies are over-charging you.
When Rihanna took a $2 million loss on what was supposed to be her dream home, she probably never suspected that this legal battle would last this long.
According to the Daily Mail, Rihanna’s lawyers were ordered to schedule a deposition date for the pop singer. In 2009, Ri Ri purchased her Beverly Hills mansion for $6.9 million. Soon after, the home suffered major water damage which caused her to sue several companies. She eventually got rid of the home altogether causing her to take a loss of $2 million.
The company Rihanna is suing is LaRocca Inspection Associates, Inc. They were the initial company hired in 2009 to inspect the property. As with most inspections, their final report would contain a list of needed repairs (which must be fixed by the property owners prior to closing). In Rihanna’s lawsuit, she claimed that LaRocca had not made sure that the water seepage issues were fixed before she closed escrow
The lawsuit also charges Prudential California Reality and former owners Adrian and Heather Rudamin with fraud, negligence, and breach of contract.
No word yet on when Rihanna will submit her deposition.
Strangely, rapper The Game’s name has been brought up in a copyright infringement lawsuit between Sony/ATV and a 1970′s/1980′s rock group.
Donnie Iris and two others associated with the rock group, The Jaggerz, have filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court of Pittsburgh. The lawsuit claims that their song “Memoirs of a Traveler” was sampled in the song “Letter to the King”, which was included on The Game’s 2008 album LAX. Iris, his co-writer Eugene “Benny” Faiella, and the estate of their former manager Joseph V. Rock are claiming that there are a substantial amount of unpaid royalties not accounted for. Thus, they are suing Sony/ATV.
But why if The Game is signed to a different label?
The Game is signed to Geffen/Universal. However, the label says that the royalties from the song were paid to EMI Publishing Company. Unfortunately, the lawsuit states that EMI never passed the money on to the plaintiffs. Plus, Sony bought out EMI in June 2012. This is why Sony is being sued.
The plaintiffs also claim that they have tried several times to settle this issue out of court. But, since January 2013, they believe Sony hasn’t made any real effort to pay them, even after being sent several correspondences throughout the year.
The guys are simply tired of waiting. Therefore, a lawsuit was filed last Wednesday. The amount the songwriters are suing for are unknown.
This week, we updated you all on information regarding a lawsuit involving Gucci Mane and his 1017 record label. The Atlanta rapper filed paperwork accusing his former manager, Debra Antney and son/rapper Waka Flocka Flame of racketeering, fraud, and theft. Additional associates of the label were also named in the lawsuit.
Specifically Debra Antney, who was there from the beginning and has held Gucci down for many years, was shocked by the allegations. Thus, she wasted no time in releasing an official statement. Spotted at StraightFromTheA.com, Debra’s statement does not touch on the accusations of theft and fraud. But, her letter does however talk about their complex relationship and why she’ll always have love for Gucci.
“I’ve done a lot for the artists that I’ve represented, both past and present. I’ve not only helped and encouraged them in their professional lives, but in their personal lives as well. What people only hear is the negative. People love and feed off of drama. That’s nothing new, and unfortunately, I’m used to it. What no one talks about is how I was there for them, often times when no one else was.
I refuse to use any platform to address negative issues. Let it be known, that I will never speak bad about any artist I’ve worked with. When I work with someone, I really throw myself into their success. They are never clients to me, they are family. Everyone who works for me only works for me on paper. In my office, it’s a family affair. And that goes deeper than rap…deeper than music…deeper than business. Employees and artists know that.
So it confuses me how someone can attack me or come for me when I’ve done so much for them. But that’s the nature of this business. That’s why some people say don’t mix business with pleasure. Unfortunately for me, I never mastered that concept. I’m personable with everyone and my loyalty is to a fault. I won’t apologize for that; it’s who I am and it’s what allows me to be passionate about the projects I pursue.
This situation with Gucci is hard for me to accept. I have a history with him that only he and I can truly know the value of, and I have a love for him that money can’t buy. Gucci and I have been through it all together. Our struggle gave us a relationship that is unbreakable. Even through this, I stand by him. Our history is a strong one, so this is very tough. That’s all I think I’ll say on Gucci, specifically, because I still hold him close to my heart, I’m still rooting for him, and I still value our bond. If he called me today and he needed me, I’d be there. I’d cuss him out, but I’d be there. Because that’s family, and that’s what family does.
A lot of the people in my circle started from the bottom. We’ve all come a very long way. Some have left, and some are still here. We’ve fought, and we’ve celebrated. We’ve messed up, and we’ve learned. I’m still learning and I’m still building my empire. In whatever people want to do in their life, I wish everyone success, personal joy and fulfillment. I hope they wish the same for me. I won’t concern myself with those who don’t.”
It’s unfortunate that the label and relationships are being destroyed by this. When people who’s invested blood, sweat, and tears into building a company and a brand, there’s always a finger pointed at someone when they start to collapse. From a business perspective, at this time, the only thing all parties can do is lawyer up and hope for the best.
What Are Your Feelings About This Lawsuit?
Photo Credit: Power 105.1FM
Gucci Mane Files Lawsuit Against Waka Flocka, Deb Antney, Zaytoven & Others for Fraud & Racketeering
Radric Davis also known as “Gucci Mane” has filed a lawsuit against his former manager and artist. Besides Jaquin “Waka Flocka Flame” Malphurs and Debra Antney, the lawsuit also names other talents associated with his 1017 Records, LLC. His longtime producer pal Xavier “Zaytoven” Dodson, Otis “OJ da Juiceman” Jones, Jr., and Khia Stone are the other defendants named in the lawsuit.
The news comes a month or so after being jailed for violation of probation. The incident that landed him in jail occurred shortly after a public out-lash against several of his music peers on Twitter. He later blamed the outburst on his drug addiction and a former manager for the not-so -politically correct tweets.
The feud between Gucci Mane and his artist Waka Flocka has been ongoing for quite some time. He announced that he was dropping Waka from his label and that any other label can buy him for $1 million. So, this new lawsuit isn’t really a surprise.
According to AJC…
The lawsuit claims that Antney took control of the company and along with Malphurs and Stone spawned at least three separate companies without Davis’ consent and, for Malphurs, in direct violation of his artist’s contract.
The complaint claims that Antney stole a ring and necklace from Davis, failed to report tax information on her income, and seized control of his money and assets and used them for herself.
The lawsuit also accuses her of fraudulently inflating the costs of certain record label expenses and using the excess for personal gain.
The group withheld payments and royalties from Davis and Armour as well as records and information about the business of the company, the lawsuit alleges.
“Defendants’ misrepresentations and omissions were made with the intent that plaintiffs rely upon them,” the lawsuit reads. “The plaintiffs relied on the representations and would not have entrusted (the) defendants with their careers and livelihoods otherwise.”
Story still developing…
A settlement has finally been reached between the nations largest bank and the U.S. Department of Justice. After months of investigation into the seedy dealings of toxic loans, J. P. Morgan Chase admits that their practices were unlawful and plans to fork over $13 billion. Of the settlement, $4 billion will aid in the relief of suffering homeowners.
“Without a doubt, the conduct uncovered in this investigation helped sow the seeds of the mortgage meltdown,” Attorney General Eric Holder said in a statement. “J.P. Morgan was not the only financial institution during this period to knowingly bundle toxic loans and sell them to unsuspecting investors, but that is no excuse for the firm’s behavior.”
In an official statement, the Dept. of Justice says that J. P. Morgan Chase acknowledged the fact that it told investors that mortgage securities were in compliance with underwriting policies, when in fact bank employees knew that the loans did not comply. Therefore, the $4 billion in aid and its particulars were decided upon by the Dept of Justice and the Dept. of Housing and Urban Development. Their negotiations ended with the following distributed payout:
- $3.2 billion towards the write-down of principle amounts of J.P. Morgan Chase held loans.
- Up to $500 million towards mortgage “forbearance” – the restructuring of home loans in order to reduce monthly payments.
- Additional $2 billion will go toward ”new mortgage origination for low-and-moderate income borrowers and absorb the remaining principle owed on properties that have been vacated, but not yet foreclosed upon.”
It is expected that these mortgage fixes will be completed by the end of 2016.
Read full story HERE.
If you want to party hard with Justin Bieber, you better know how to keep your mouth shut.
According to several reports, Bieber has recently caught a lot of crap from people snitching on him. So, in effort to keep the snitching to a minimum, Bieber threw a big party at his Calabasus, California home and insisted that EVERYONE sign a confidentiality agreement. From the young chicks to the security guy, every person that step foot inside his party had to put down their John Hancock.
In the agreement, partygoers were asked to refrain from texting, tweeting, taking photos, video recording, etc. It is rumored that his $3 million sanction is actually much cheaper than what he has included in the “no snitching” contract in the past. Some say he’s threatened “talkers” with a $5 million sanction at once upon a time.
Regardless of the confidentiality agreement, it is being reported that the police were called out to Bieber’s crib at least three separate times during this most recent party. Neighbors complained about the excessive noise and lingering smell of marijuana.
No arrest were made, however, the police did issue Bieber a citation for disturbing the peace.
Pebbles interview with Wendy Williams last week proved that: 1) Pebbles indeed carried Chanel purses all the time as the TLC biopic reflected, 2) A gag order is preventing her from truly telling her side of the story, 3) She’s pissed off at VH1 too and has plans to take them to court, 4) Condones her daughter’s hatred against Chilli.
Everyone who has followed the TLC story for twenty years expected there to be some backlash from their former manager, but never to this extent. The portrayal of Pebbles in the VH1 biopic, “Crazy Sexy Cool: The TLC Story”, is all a bunch of lies according to the former label executive. She’s clearly on a mission to save what little bit of “good” reputation she has left by appearing on various media shows.
On “The Wendy Williams Show“, Pebbles was given the opportunity to appear and dispel any falsehoods shown in the film. Doing what Wendy is known for, she went straight in for the kill and asked Pebbles the questions that everyone wanted answers for. What Wendy and the viewers didn’t expect is that most of the questions asked would be shot down due to confidentiality agreements and gag orders. Pebbles, honestly, took up air time for no reason at all. Why was she even on the show if she couldn’t directly answer the questions??
Anyway, after the interview, Chilli and T-Boz quickly rebutted some of the things Pebbles did reveal on Wendy’s show. First, the girls released an official statement in denial of the Pebbles allegations that Chilli and L.A. Reid had a sexual encounter back in the day.
“No member of TLC ever slept with or had sexual contact with LA Reid as Perri falsely accused Chilli of on “The Wendy Williams Show.” In fact, Perri had falsely allege the same thing happened with Tionne.”
Pebbles also denied that she solely made the decision to kick Chilli out the group. And that, in fact, it was T-Boz and Left-Eye who decided that they wanted Chilli out because of her constant fraternizing with the “help” [Dallas Austin].
“I would like to confirm that Perri Reid was the only person who ever suggested that Chilli leave TLC. Neither Lisa nor I ever wanted or suggested that.”
At this point, no one knows who is speaking the truth or not. The only thing that we can confirm is that the movie is based on Chilli and T-Boz’s recounts of their past. The film was presented as their “truth”, so how can anyone dispute that.
The pending legal actions against the girls and VH1 is all talk until proved otherwise. If we believe Pebbles, however, she is going to sue so that she can clear her name and make some extra cash while doing it. And that’s not it! During her sit down with Wendy, she stated that she’s working on a book and certain things will be spelled out in detail on what happened between her, TLC and L.A. Reid.
SMH…the saga continues.
Earlier in October, we informed you of an ongoing investigation and lawsuit against billionaire Mark Cuban. [READ: Billionaire Mark Cuban's In Hot Water; May Face Fines Up to $3Million for Insider-Trading Violation]
Well, the case is finally over and Cuban can now go home with one less thing to worry about. Cuban was found not guilty of insider trading by a Texas jury in mid-October.
Cuban has always stated that he was innocent. The only reason he said he sold his shares of Mamma.com was because of a shady stock broker and word that the company was going private. The SEC wasn’t quite sold on Cuban’s reasoning. Thus, the SEC filed a lawsuit against him in 2004 and then again in 2010 after the original verdict was overturned. Cuban says although the news of Mamma going private did prompt him to sell his shares. But, he insisted that the word didn’t come from Faure, but from potential investors.
Once the not guilty verdict was announced, Cuban took the time to blast Jane Folena, prosecutor for the SEC.
“Jan Folena, who represents the United States of America, stood up there and lied,” Cuban told reporters outside the court. He continued, “I’m the luckiest guy in the world and I’m glad I could stand up to them.”
Alrighty then Cuban! Say it with your chest! *in Kevin Hart’s voice*
Spike Lee Being Sued for $1.2 Million for “Stupid” Trayvon Martin Tweet + ‘Next Chapter’ Episode w/Oprah [Video]
Film director, Spike Lee, is in the news again. This time for a costly backlash surrounding a tweet sent out to millions regarding the Trayvon Martin situation.
An elderly couple in Florida says they experienced a lot of hate mail and unwanted media attention because of Spike Lee. Elaine and David McClain claims in their lawsuit that Spike’s tweet included their home address. Spike’s tweet was based off of the address information that one of his followers tweeted, which he assumed was the address of George Zimmerman. However, Mrs. McClain says that address was in fact theirs and someone confused the two because she has a son who’s last name is Zimmerman and middle name is George. Strange coincidence, right?
Well, although Spike and the couple originally reached a settlement agreement of $10,000 back in 2012, the McClain’s lawyer insists that the hate mail, emails, and an ongoing media presence outside of their home. Therefore, an apology at this point is simply not enough. Court documents details their reason for the lawsuit.
“As the legal, proximate and direct result of Defendant’s negligence, gross negligence, recklessness, conscious indifference, and/or willfulness, plaintiffs were required to temporarily relocate,” reads the court filing. (via Smoking Gun)
Although the court documents didn’t list a specific amount in which they seek. But it is believed that the nature of this case could end up costing Spike Lee up to $1.2 million.
During Spike’s sit down with Oprah Winfrey on Sunday night’s episode of the”Next Chapter”, he vaguely talked about the case but knows that his actions were “stupid”.
“I don’t know what my intention was,” Lee told Winfrey. “But angry is not a justification for stupidity.
“There’s nothing I can say that can defend what I did. It was stupid.”
Watch Spike Lee’s response to Oprah about the tweet below:
Source: NY Daily News/Oprah.com
Even after a week it aired, the TLC story is still ringing bells throughout the media world.
After stating her peace via Twitter the day before (and after) the movie aired, Pebbles has now released an official statement. The statement summarizes how she ultimately felt about her portrayal in the film. Pebbles claims that none of the character traits shown in the TLC story were true. Therefore, she’s in the process of filing a lawsuit against Chilli, T-Boz and VH1 on the basis of defamation.
First I want to thank all of you for the well wishes and prayers. I apologize for the delay in responding to the movie, but I wanted to gather my thoughts. I have always been a private person and this unprovoked attack has been extremely upsetting to me and my family. I have needed time to spend with my family and for personal reflection.
The movie contains many false and defamatory statements and scenes about me. Please know that I have never cheated or mislead anyone. I will defend my reputation, accomplishments, and character. My attorney is in the process of demanding a retraction of the false and defamatory statements and scenes about me from VH1.
My silence has empowered individuals looking for a payday at my expense. I have held my peace for 20 years and it’s time the truth comes out. I will be sharing my story in the appropriate venue at the appropriate time. With all my heart I thank you for your faithful support.
I am extremely proud of the success and massive accomplishments of TLC—the group I discovered, managed, and mentored. I helped push open doors for TLC and other women in this male dominated industry. My sacrifices ultimately opened the door for not only a new wave of female performers in this industry but also a new generation of female executives. That backdrop makes the movie extremely personally upsetting to me.
Many speculate that Pebbles real encourgement for filing a lawsuit is due to money. After being portrayed as a selfish, mean, and greedy b–ch on the movie, a lawsuit continues to shine a poor light on her character. Also to add fuel to the fire, she has also been quoted to have said she’s suing Left-Eye too. SMH. Even if she’s owed money from Left-Eye’s estate, the fact that she’s suing a deceased person is plain old foul.
Could T-Boz and Chilli’s portrayal of Pebbles be a lie? None of us really know the truth because we were not there. But the girls accusations against Pebbles and L.A. Reid isn’t nothing we haven’t heard already. TLC has been talking about their unfair dealings for years. So, it is strange how Pebbles chose this moment to sue them? And let’s not forget poor Toni Braxton. She got screwed over for millions while being a top-selling female R&B artist signed to LaFace Records. We can’t possibly forget that!
So who’s lying here? Or who simply just can’t fathom having their image destroyed by a single movie?
Word spread quickly after a Billboard interview leaked of Future making some not-so-nice statements about Drake‘s music. Drake quickly caught the shade and reacted by kicking Future off of his Would You Like A Tour? tour dates. With the tour to start on October 18, Future’s attorneys sprung into action and stated that he would sue Drake. The potential loss of wages that Future would miss out on making $40,000 a show, which totaled an estimated $1.5 million.
But remember, salt has been pouring on this friendship for a minute. Back when Future blew up off of his hit “Tony Montana”, Drake was featured on the song. After Drake decided to not show up to the video shoot, Future felt like that was a slap in the face. Future later spoke about the issue and brushed it off as just how the industry works (especially for an new artist on his way to stardom). Was Future a little too honest in the Billboard interview? Or was it an misinterpretation by the writer? No matter what, Drake took as a jab and wanted no parts of the Atlanta rapper.
Well…word got out that the guys (or their attorneys) has hashed things out. Future release an official statement on Thursday stating that he WILL be apart of the tour.
“I am set to continue as planned with Drake and Miguel on the “Would You Like A Tour?” tour slated to begin on October 18th in Pittsburgh, PA. I’m looking forward to hitting the road this fall. Love4Life Honest.”
The statement is vague in that he didn’t reveal whether or not the actual lawsuit was still pending. But, I guess we can assume that it’s a wash and Future and Drake has reached an amicable agreement.
Good news. At the end of the day, it is all about the fans. So give the fans what they want (and what they paid for)!
For anyone who thought the airing of the new TLC biopoic was going to premiere without a little controversy surrounding it, you were sadly mistaken. One of the most talked about stories in music history, the rise and downfall of the group TLC, is finally being told. But, there’s one person who is trying to put a stop to it.
TLC’s founder, Pebbles, caught wind of the movie and its content and is very upset at how she’s being portrayed. In a recent interview on Power 105.1′s Breakfast Club, T-Boz and Chilli were asked about certain scenes in the movie and confirmed whether or not Pebble’s character was exaggerated a little bit.
She did do some good for us, she taught us some things, she put us together, but then there’s always times when you work with people there’s always things that your never going to agree with and you don’t like their ways and people part so I didn’t think she got over that.
Chilli encountered a lot of hate from Pebbles. At one point, Pebbles kicked her out the group for being pregnant. She stated:
I didnt want to become a mother too soon, so teen pregnancy didnt happen or anything like that but when I did get pregnant and Pebbles kicked me out the group and then put me back in the group, I was scared and a lot of different emotions that made it hard to do what i did because i wanted it so bad.
Pebbles has since seen the Breakfast Club interview and quickly aired out her disgust via Twitter. Her claim is that they all played a part in this and she shouldn’t be the person to get slandered. Thus, she’s rounding up her team of attorneys and vows to sue the T-Boz, Chilli, and the network.
I’m NOT here to promote something I put on the MAP and yet have been disrespected by because of more reasons than one! Lawyers on deck????…I would say being lied on 4 as long &trying to continue to is sadder. But,the continued slander from all will help prove just what was done….Thank you love. It’s not good what they played a part of but it will be dealt with now that the slander continues. TLC without me? No way.??…
I am in shock listening to all this mess and lies on this radio interview!!This is madness!!! It’s SO hard to believe this! DO NOT believe…Love you guys. Not going to comment about this anymore on here UN officially. Dealing with this though. #??….
Damn…this is about to get real ugly.
In case you missed TLC on the Breakfast Club, here are the three-part interview. Part 1 discussed the Pebbles issue.
The Atlanta-based Home Depot Company is under a little public scrutiny. A 25 year former employer claims that his separation from the company was forced because he was gay.
Lex Housh, a former store manager in San Diego, California, has filed a lawsuit against Home Depot for sexual harassment and discrimination. In his lawsuit, Housh says that his firing was part of a bigger plot to get rid of homosexual employees in order to cut company costs. In 2008, the recession hit many companies very hard. One way that companies streamlined operations to seek savings was to conduct a reorganization. Re-orgs, of course, consists of chopping down the workforce. Housh believes part of the re-org was to cut health benefits for gays. He claims that Home Depot didn’t want to have to pay the huge cost associated with insuring employees that could potentially catch HIV/AIDS. Thus, homosexuals unfortunately fit the description.
As part of the plot, Housh says he soon began receiving an on-slide of erroneous performance write-ups, which ultimately led up to his dismissal.
The 57 year old also states in his lawsuit that he encountered unsolicited sexual ridicule. Once his manager found out that he was gay, Housh began to receive sexually explicit photographs from other managers.
Housh is seeking $100,000 in damages.
Representatives for Home Depot has not made a public statement.
Remember M.I.A.’s performance during the Super Bowl halftime in 2012?? Well, despite her performance being good and alongside a pop icon Madonna, just like Janet Jackson’s infamous nip slip, M.I.A. is now being penalized by the National Football League.
The NFL has apparently suing the singer for $1.5 million for her middle finger hand gesture made during that performance. They claimed that M.I.A. was in breech of contract by flipping the finger which wasn’t a good look for the NFL and the 167 million viewers who were watching.
Of course, this didn’t sit too well with the outspoken artist. M.I.A. recorded a Youtube video to explain her disgust with the entire situation. Check out what she had to say…
“The NFL thing is completely ridiculous. It’s been making me laugh for a while, but now it’s so boring, I don’t even laugh anymore.
Now they’re scapegoating me into figuring out the goal posts on what is offensive in America. Is my finger offensive or is an underage black girl with her legs wide open more offensive to the family audience?”
DO YOU THINK THE NFL IS GOING OVERBOARD WITH THIS LAWSUIT?
Jermaine Dupri is knee deep in debt apparently. According to the AJC, Dupri and Suntrust Bank is battling it out in courts regarding an outstanding loan. The bank claims Dupri owes over $1 million but is now being counter-sued for changing the loan payment agreement.
Dupri filed a response in Fulton County Superior Court this week to the suit filed by SunTrust in May. He is seeking at least $216,000 in damages and attorneys fees.
Dupri said that as part of a 2009 loan, SunTrust had agreed to use 25 percent of proceeds from music royalties to pay taxes owed to Georgia and the Internal Revenue Service, but the bank failed to make the payments.
Dupri claims that in 2010, SunTrust changed terms of the loan to remove the provision requiring that it make the tax payments.
In SunTrust’s lawsuit, filed in May, the bank alleges the Grammy winner was in default and still owes money toward the $4.9 million loan from 2010. The loan is backed by copyrighted music owned by Dupri, So So Def and other businesses, as well as a building on Briarwood Court in DeKalb County that houses two recording studios.
In his counterclaim, which accuses SunTrust of fraud and breach of contract, Dupri said terms of the 2010 loan changed what were originally variable payments, due to the unpredictability of royalties from EMI Music Publishing, to higher fixed payments. A loan that originally was not in default, the producer said, soon became in default because new payments due “were not based on realistic projections of Dupri’s income.”
Read full article here…
In a previous article [HERE], we informed our readers of the lawsuit pending against the filmmakers of the Oscar-worthy ‘The Butler’. Well, a final decision is forthcoming which requests that the title be changed a little bit.
The film, which is based off of the true story about Cecil Gaines and his 34-year career as the head butler in the White House, should soon be granted to opportunity to begin its fully revamped promo run. The Motion Picture Association of America overruled a previous ruling given to the Warner Brothers Co. The Weinstein Company was ordered to not use the original title ‘The Butler’, but instead could use add additional verbiage like “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” or “The White House Butler”. Also, the MPAA has ordered them to use the same size font throughout the full title (ex. “LEE DANIELS’ THE BUTLER” not “Lee Daniels’ THE BUTLER”).
The Weinstein Company has submitted their two choices to the MPAA and will soon announce the new name. However, if they decide to not comply with the ruling, the Weinstein Company will face some harsh financial penalties.
The MPAA faulted The Weinstein Company for “continuous use of the unregistered title ‘The Butler’ in willful violation of the TRB rules” and said the company is “permanently prohibited from any use of the title.” The Weinstein Company will have to pay $400,000 to the Entertainment Industry Foundation for its violations, an additional $100,000 to the EIF and pay up to $150,000 to Warner Bros. for legal fees. (via Eurweb)
Until the final ruling and title is set in stone, the Weinstein Company is not allowed to use the title in any marketing materials. If they do, they will face a fine of $25,000 per day.
The film stars Forest Whitaker, Oprah Winfrey, Jane Fonda, Robin Williams, and other big name actors. It is scheduled to hit theaters on August 16, 2013.
If this isn’t the most interesting thing I’ve read today. There’s a lot to learn also from this story. So, pay close attention…
Apparently, there’s a women currently in an all out battle with Viacom and the BET Network over a Facebook fan page she created for the hit show “The Game.” Stacey Mattocks, an insurance agent, created the page in 2008 when the show was still on the CW. The Facebook page she created ended up being one of the vital tools that helped the show get back on the air, after it was canceled by the CW. At the time, Mattocks says that her page had about 750,000 likes when BET began their promotional run about the new season. During this time, Mattocks said the page then received about 100,000 new likes per week. Because of the shows popularity, the network knew that the Facebook page played a huge part in securing the 7.7 million viewers who tuned in to watch ‘The Game’ premiere. The Facebook page had reach over 3 million likes. So, BET offered to give Mattocks a job as a social media freelancer. Her salary would be $30 a hour.
“BET was searching for a more ‘permanent’ way to capitalize on the FB Page and Mattocks’ efforts,” says the lawsuit. “Therefore, on December 15, 2010, BET submitted a proposed contract to Mattocks that would have paid her a maximum of $85,000.00 over a one year period. Mattocks declined this offer because it was unreasonably low, would have stripped her of all rights to the FB Page, and, moreover, could have been terminated at any point by BET, with or without cause.”
Since Mattocks refused their second offer, BET continued to try to persuade her to hand over the rights to the page. She says she was taken out on expensive dinners, flown to Los Angeles, invited to red carpet events, and even attended the premier party. She was even credited to have played a part of the show’s success in newspaper and magazine articles. At one point, BET tried to create their own page but they didn’t get as many “likes” or ”followers” as Mattocks. BET eventually offered her a third offer in which she also refused.
By August 2012, Mattocks page had 6.2 million likes. BET tried to have the page deleted. Then the network asked for administrative rights so that they too could also control the page. BET sent her a cease-and-desist letter and also tried to have her page completely shut down. Mattocks claims that her page was bringing in some substantial income.
The removal of the Facebook page caused Mattocks to lose income, she says. At the time, she had worked out a deal with some company called Sulia that paid her about $2,000 to $3,000 per week, plus $300-$500 in sponsored posts. She says she also got money from Google AdSense and for Amazon referrals.
Therefore, Mattocks struck back and hired an attorney. In her lawsuit, she alleges “that BET has committed tortious interference, breach of contract, breach of good faith and fair dealing and copyright infringement. The latter count is based on the allegation that BET copied elements from her Facebook page onto its own Facebook page.”
Mattocks case could become precedent because of the nature of the claims. Online content and who has the rights to its ownership, work-for-hire, if companies/networks can legally take control over fan-based pages, and more are all legal questions that will be answered in this case. This is the first I’ve ever heard of something like this. So, it will be interesting to see what the outcome will be.
Viacom nor BET has produced official statements as of yet.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter
The South Florida Business Journal is reporting that former NFL quarterback Daunte Culpepper recently forked over his $3.6 million home to Suntrust Bank. Culpepper’s 10,000 square foot home was in foreclosure. The court documents cited that he was$3 million in debt. To settle the debt, Culpepper handed over the property. The bank later dismissed the lawsuit.
Daunte Culpepper played for several teams throughout his career. He made his debut into the NFL in 1999 with the Minnesota Vikings. He then spent time with the Oakland Raiders, Detroit Lions, and finally the Miami Dolphins. The last team he played for was for the United Football League’s Sacramento Mountain Lions in 2010.
At one time, Culpepper was reportedly worth $30 million. Not sure where why this current financial problem exist. But, luckily he has a second home in the suburbs of Weston.
World’s number one female talk show host, Oprah Winfrey, and Golden Globe Award winner Forest Whitaker stars in the new film “The Butler” hitting theaters Aug 16. Winfrey and Whitaker play husband and wife as Mr. & Mrs. Gaines who are attempting to teach their son about respect, breaking down barriers and legendary actor Mr. Sidney Poitier. Whitaker character Mr. Gaines served as butler for several U.S presidents across decades.
The movie is unofficially said to already be a prospect for nominations for several awards, however, the movie title has caused a law dispute between Warner Bros. and The Weinstein Company.
The original movie title “The Butler” is a short film in the Warner Bros. library produced in 1916. Although similar movie titles are not uncommon in the movie industry, it is report that this isn’t the first title battle between the two companies. A judge recently found in favor of Warner Bros. for the name “The Butler.” Whatever The Weinstein Company decides to name the movie it is set to be a “hit” of epic historic proportion.
Written by Dameon Daniels, content writer for STACKS Magazine
Apparently, not everyone enjoys rap music. A rock band, Bloodstone, recently filed a lawsuit against T.I. and Kanye West for sampling their song without permission. The original song “I’m Just Doing My Job” was used on T.I.’s 2003 Trap Muzik album. Tip’s version “Doin My Job” was produced by Kanye West and contained the sample in its entirety. Bloodstone lawsuit claims that they were not made aware that Universal Music Enterprises granted T.I. the license to use the sample. The 3-member band also claims they have not received any money made from the millions of copies sold of the song. They are seeking punitive damages and are seeking an injunction on the song. (Source)
Rappers can wear the bling, but always seem to have a problem with paying for it. Case in point…Soulja Boy. An Atlanta jeweler is suing the rapper for an unpaid debt. Icebox Jewelry, located in the Buckhead area, claims Soulja Boy purchased several high-end peices from them in October 2011 for $45,144. Later he returned to have some of the peices repaired. The repairs costs him $15,726. But now, Soulja Boy is refusing the pay off the debt.
Could it be that the jewelry was faulty so he feels no need to pay? If so, this situation may be able to be straightened out. If not, Soulja Boy just pay off the debt and (or half of it) and move on. It’s not like you don’t have the money to do so.