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Tag: Lawsuits (91-100 of 520)

Charlie Sheen at the center of more legal trouble

A former Washington, D.C., police commander has threatened to file a whistleblower lawsuit after his decision to provide an escort for Charlie Sheen allegedly resulted in his demotion. According to Reuters, DCPD officer Hilton Burton claims he was transferred after admitting the kind of celebrity escorts he provided for Sheen were standard operating procedure.

Last April, Sheen arrived in D.C. for a “Violent Torpedo of Truth” booking. At the time, Burton was commander of the special operations division, which customarily provides escorts for visiting dignitaries. During the ride they provided for Sheen from Dulles International Airport to Washington’s Constitution Hall, Sheen reportedly posted pictures of the police car’s speedometer reaching 80 MPH and tweeted, “n car with Police escort in front and rear! driving like someone’s about to deliver a baby! Cop car lights #Spinning!”

The incident garnered much publicity because of the tweets and Sheen’s ongoing battle with CBS and Two and a Half Men creator Chuck Lorre. Four months later, Burton was transferred to the DCPD’s medical services branch and demoted two ranks — he claims because Police Chief Cathy Lanier didn’t like the media attention.

Lanier responded in a statement Thursday that, after “a review of command decisions, including several critical incidents,” and based on the recommendation of a supervisor, Burton was transferred. Burton will sue for his former rank to be restored, plus back pay, benefits, and damages.

Read more:
Charlie Sheen apologizes for ‘Ashton sucks’ comments, holds his line on ‘Two and a Half Men’
Charlie Sheen finally cracks: ‘I’m tired of pretending Ashton doesn’t suck’ — VIDEO
FX defends Charlie Sheen gamble: ‘I believe in redemption’

Kim Dotcom released on bail; facing extradition to U.S.

The founder of the file-sharing website Megaupload was released on bail Wednesday after a New Zealand judge decided Kim Dotcom lacked means to flee because his funds had been seized. “I am relieved to go home to see my family, my three little kids and my pregnant wife,” a smiling Dotcom told reporters outside court. “And I hope you understand that that is all I want to say right now.”

U.S. authorities allege Dotcom facilitated millions of illegal downloads through his company, costing movie makers and songwriters some half a billion dollars in lost copyright revenue. He was arrested Jan. 20. Dotcom was released without any monetary bail bond, which is standard in New Zealand’s district courts. Ministry of Justice officials declined to describe the conditions of his release, saying The Associated Press would need to apply to the judge for that information.

The U.S. is seeking extradition of Dotcom, 38, and three of his colleagues on racketeering charges. He confirmed he would be fighting U.S. extradition efforts.
Asked how he had been treated by the police after his high-profile arrest, Dotcom said, “Well, it felt a little bit like an audition to American Idol.”

New Zealand authorities have seized millions of dollars in investments and assets owned by Dotcom, including luxury cars and artworks. North Shore District Court Judge Nevin Dawson found that the German-born Dotcom no longer posed a significant flight risk because the court was unaware of any hidden money or assets that could help him flee the country. New Zealand courts turned down earlier bail requests, but Dawson said details about Dotcom’s assets had been unclear then.
“Mr. Dotcom’s submission that he has not concealed any assets or bank accounts has largely been borne out,” the judge found.

Dotcom was born Kim Schmitz but legally changed his name. He is a citizen of both Germany and Finland and was granted New Zealand residency in 2010. The Megaupload company is registered in Hong Kong. Dotcom’s colleagues were granted bail earlier.

Read more:
Megaupload (and Megavideo) shut down by the Feds
Megaupload has been shut down. But can the government shut down the Internet?
Megaupload indictment: So-called ‘CEO’ Swizz Beatz appears to be in the clear

'Gasland' director arrested on Capitol Hill

Gasland director Josh Fox, whose 2010 documentary investigated the potential hazards of natural gas drilling, was arrested by Capitol police after he attempted to film a hearing of the House Science Committee on Wednesday. (Watch here.) Though the hearing was broadcast on the committee’s website, Rep. Andy Harris (MD-R) objected to Fox and his camera crew being there and had them handcuffed and removed — they were later charged with unlawful entry. “This is a public hearing!” Mr. Fox shouted as he was led away, according to several news reports. “I’m being denied my First Amendment rights.”

Fox, who is filming a sequel to Gasland, was later released with a misdemeanor citation and a Feb. 15 court date. In a statement posted on IndieWire, Fox said, “I was arrested today for exercising my First Amendment rights to freedom of the press on Capitol Hill. I was not expecting to be arrested for practicing journalism. … It is my understanding that public speech is allowed to be filmed. Congress should be no exception. No one on Capitol Hill should regard themselves exempt from the Constitution…”

Lindsay Lohan sued by pedestrian allegedly hit by her car

Lindsay Lohan’s bad luck with cars continues after a woman who claims she was struck by the actress’ sports car sued over her injuries Wednesday.

Nubia Del Carmen Preza claims she was struck by Lohan’s Maserati while walking through a West Hollywood intersection in September 2010. READ FULL STORY

Hospital chief testifies about Garth Brooks' donation

A hospital executive discussed country singer Garth Brooks’ request that the facility return a $500,000 donation in an email to staff members in March 2009, according to trial testimony Thursday.

Brooks wants the Integris Canadian Valley Regional Hospital in his hometown of Yukon to return the money, claiming in a lawsuit that hospital administrators reneged on their pledge to name a part of a medical complex after Colleen Brooks.

The Tulsa World reports that the hospital president’s March 2009 email about Brooks’ request for the money back was discussed during testimony Thursday. The email from CEO and President James Moore stated the hospital “may not deny Garth access to the money,” but could “make him work to get it.”

Moore on Thursday reiterated his earlier testimony that he never made an agreement with Brooks on naming rights in connection with the $500,000. He said the gift from Brooks was anonymous and “unrestricted,” meaning Integris could use the money at its discretion.

Defense attorney Terry Thomas showed jurors a September 2008 email from Brooks to Moore. In it, Brooks said, “… I’m not sure what our understanding is,” but “… we have to come to some agreement …”

Earlier, Moore testified that Brooks considered donating up to $15 million if the facility would rename itself after his mother. An internal document from the hospital quotes Brooks as saying a $15 million gift for naming rights was “exactly” what he had in mind.

Colleen Brooks died of cancer in 1999. A women’s center never was built.

Murdoch to pay Jude Law, 36 others over illegal hacking

Rupert Murdoch’s media empire apologized and agreed to cash payouts Thursday to 37 people — including a movie star, a soccer player, a top British politician and the son of a serial killer — who were harassed and phone-hacked by his tabloid press.

The four — Jude Law, Ashley Cole, John Prescott and Chris Shipman — were among three dozen victims who received financial damages from Murdoch’s British newspaper company for illegal eavesdropping and other intrusions, including email snooping.

Lawyers for the claimants said the settlements vindicated their accusation that senior Murdoch executives had long known about the scale of illegal phone hacking and had tried to cover it up. READ FULL STORY

Rupert Murdoch settles with Jude Law and other celebs over phone hacking

Rupert Murdoch’s British newspaper company on Thursday agreed to pay damages to 36 high-profile victims of tabloid phone hacking, including actor Jude Law, soccer player Ashley Cole, and former British deputy prime minister John Prescott.
In the 15 settlements whose financial terms were made public, amounts generally ran into the tens of thousands of pounds (dollars) — although Law received 130,000 pounds (about $200,000) to settle claims against the now-shuttered News of the World tabloid and its sister paper, The Sun. READ FULL STORY

Lindsay Lohan cited for $94,000 in unpaid taxes

Lindsay Lohan is facing a lien for nearly $94,000 that the federal government claims she owes in unpaid income taxes. According to the lien filed in Los Angeles County last Thursday, Lohan has an unpaid balance of $93,701.57 from the 2009 tax year.

Lohan’s rep Steve Honig responded to EW’s request for comment with the following statement: “Lindsay’s personal finances are her business and no one else’s.”

Lindsay Lohan sued by paparazzo

Lindsay Lohan and her chauffeur, Paola Demara, have been sued by a paparazzo named Grigor Balyan who claims that, on Jan. 10, 2010, he was injured when the actress’ vehicle ran over him outside of a club in Hollywood as he was trying to take pictures of the troubled star.

According to Balyan’s suit, filed yesterday in Los Angeles Superior Court, “Defendants, each of them, so negligently, carelessly, and recklessly operated, maintained, repaired, owned, and controlled their automobile so as to cause an accident which resulted in personal injuries and property damage to Plaintiff.”

Inside the court documents obtained by EW, the suit is marked as an “unlimited civil case,” which means that the damages Balyan is seeking exceed $25,000. He is suing Lohan for personal injury, property damage, and general negligence.

Court docs reveal name of actress suing IMDb for age discrimination

The actress who is suing Amazon and its subsidiary the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) for exposing her age revealed her name in an amended court filing on Friday. EW has confirmed that 40-year-old Huong Hoang of Texas is the woman behind the much-ballyhooed lawsuit, which was originally filed last October. Hoang, who has adopted the Americanized stage name Junie Hoang, states in the claim that her Asian name has led to industry discrimination.

Hoang’s IMDb page shows that the actress has regularly appeared in small-budget films throughout the last decade, but she claims that she was driven to sue when the subscription-based IMDbPro took her personal information from a credit card and refused to take it down. Hoang subscribed to IMDbPro to increase her exposure, and noticed that her legal date of birth had been added to her public profile shortly after. This, according to Hoang’s filing, has led to a “substantial decrease in acting credits, employment opportunities and earnings.”

Read more:
IMDb age discrimination suit could cause actress to be ‘blacklisted,’ says SAG lawyer
Lawyers on IMDb suit: ‘It’s going to be an uphill fight’
Woman sues IMDb for revealing her age

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