50 Cent Hits Former Lawyers With Lawsuit
The hip-hop star, real name Curtis Jackson, partnered with Sleek Audio executives in 2011 for his own Sleek by 50 line, but the collection never materialized and he filed suit the following year over allegations they did not refund his initial investment after the project fell through. He then went on to launch an earphones line with rival firm SMS Audio, but that did not sit well with Sleek chiefs, who accused the rapper of stealing the designs for the over-the-ear products they had been developing together. The two parties entered arbitration talks and a judge ruled in Sleek Audio’s favor in April 2014, ordering the superstar to give up his fight for the hefty fee. After he contested the decision, another judge upheld the ruling and ordered 50 to hand over the $16 million last October. In his lawsuit against Garvey Schubert Barer, Jackson claims his former lawyers did a terrible job representing him during the Sleek Audio case, accusing them of failing to “employ the requisite knowledge and skill necessary to confront the circumstances of the case,” according to documents obtained by Business Insider. A representative for GSB has since responded to the lawsuit, in a statement to the publication he said, “We understand that Mr. Jackson is disappointed in the outcome of Sleek Audio’s arbitration against him. However, Mr. Jackson’s complaint against GSB omits a number of relevant facts and misstates a number of others, and we will respond to the allegations in accordance with the court’s rules.” “Our attorneys properly counseled Mr. Jackson and his sophisticated team of financial and operational advisors about the transactions and the arbitrations with Sleek,” they continued. “Unfortunately, the arbitrator in the Sleek case found Mr. Jackson responsible for his actions and the actions of those who performed services for him or his companies. We look forward to demonstrating that our attorneys handled the Sleek matters appropriately in all aspects.” Jackson is seeking $75 million in damages.