LAWSUITS/LEGAL UPDATES: Indian Composer Bappi Lahiri Wins Injunction Against Aftermath & 4 Charged, 2 Cops Hurt Outside MTV Studio (Click on More to view all articles)

Indian composer Bappi Lahiri won a court order barring sales of "Addictive" by Truth Hurts. The song was produced by DJ Quik and was released on Dr. Dre's Aftermath Entertainment.

A federal judge in Los Angeles issued an order prohibiting further sales of the song "Addictive" by Truth Hurts unless and until composer Bappi Lahiri is listed on the song’s credits, Anthony Kornarens, an attorney for Lahiri stated.

Lahiri first filed in October against hip hop producer Dr. Dre, whose real name is Andre Young, Aftermath Records, Aftermath parent Interscope Records, and Universal Music Group, the world’s largest media company and a unit of Vivendi Universal.

"The judge took the matter quite seriously and felt as though, from what I could tell, the defendants had not acted appropriately," Lahiri’s lawyer Anthony Kornarens said.

Truth Hurts’ album sold about 600,000 copies between its June release and the time the suit was filed late last year.

"Addictive" was released as a single and became a top 10 hit. Truth Hurts, whose real name is Shari Watson, told MTV last year that Dre had remixed "Addictive," according to an article that appeared on the MTV Web site.

Kornarens has accused Universal of "cultural imperialism," and said the judge expedited the trial date of June 17 for Lahiri's ongoing lawsuit.

4 Charged, 2 Cops Hurt Outside MTV Studio


NEW YORK (AP) — Two police officers suffered minor injuries and four people were arrested Monday when an MTV contest in Times Square got out of hand.

People began shoving and pushing as a crowd of several thousand gathered in the morning outside MTV's studios at 44th Street and Broadway, police said.

The four people arrested were charged with disorderly conduct, said Detective Brian Sessa, a police spokesman.

The contest was a hip-hop talent search in which finalists would have competed for a Def Jam recording contract and $25,000. MTV said the New York Police Department asked it to cancel the "MC Battles" because of overcrowding.

"We're disappointed we had to take this measure, but we'll announce details about rescheduling 'MC Battles' shortly," said Dave Sirulnick, MTV's executive vice president of news and production.

The two injured police officers were treated at a hospital and released.

Rapper Juvenile Pleads Guilty to Battery

MIAMI (AP) — Rapper Juvenile, accused of hitting a man on the head with a champagne bottle and grabbing a police officer, pleaded guilty Friday to felony battery and was sentenced to 75 hours of community service.

Juvenile, whose real name is Terius Gray, will also be on unsupervised probation for one year, donate $5,000 to a local children's charity and pay $782 in court costs as part of a plea deal. If he violates his probation, he would face a possible five years in prison.

"I'm good, man," Juvenile told reporters as he left the courtroom, declining further comment.

The 27-year-old New Orleans resident, whose hits include "Ha" and "Back That Thang Up," had faced a possible 15-year sentence on the original charges of aggravated battery, battery on a law enforcement officer, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest without violence.

Prosecutor Teresa Williams said she agreed to the deal because none of the other brawlers had been arrested.

On March 28, 2001, four fights started outside the comedy club, including one where Juvenile allegedly hit Jackson Saint Ange with a champagne bottle, knocking him unconscious.

After the fight, Juvenile allegedly ran over to a police officer, grabbed him and yelled obscenities, saying he wanted to be arrested rather than another person whom officers had detained.

Saint Ange's attorney, Andrew Boros, told Judge Bertila Soto that his client agreed with the plea deal and had settled a civil lawsuit against Juvenile for an undisclosed sum.

Judge Won't Dismiss Charge Vs. Reubens

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A judge refused to dismiss a misdemeanor charge accusing Pee-wee Herman actor Paul Reubens of possessing child pornography.

Defense attorney Blair Berk had argued that a state law enacted in 1989 does not apply to material produced prior to that year and that the one-year statute of limitations for a misdemeanor crime expired before Reubens was charged in November.

Assistant City Attorney Richard Kraft said he was pleased with Superior Court Judge Carol Rehm's Friday ruling. Berk said she may appeal.

Both sides were ordered to appear in Superior Court on Feb. 28 for scheduling of a trial date.

Reubens, best known for playing childlike character Pee-wee Herman, has pleaded innocent to one misdemeanor count of possessing material depicting children under 18 engaging in sexual conduct. The 50-year-old actor is free on $20,000 bail.

The charge, which carries a maximum penalty of a year in jail and a $2,500 fine, resulted from a search of Reubens' home in November 2001. Police seized his art collection and personal computers.

Kraft has said police found a "massive" pornography collection consisting of photographs, magazines and hundreds of home videos and movies.

Reubens' representatives have said the actor owned a "vast and valuable" collection of erotica, including some items a century old. He never knowingly possessed child pornography and bought some of the items in his collection in large lots that he had not opened, according to his spokeswoman, Kelly Bush.

VH1 Countersues Liza Minelli, – Says Hubby Is Unprofessional

Liza Minelli could soon be recording an old George Harrison song: "Sue Me, Sue You Blues."

As reported in CelebrityAccess previously, Liza and her new husband David Gest sued VH1 over the cancellation of their planned 'Liza and David' reality show. According to the Los Angeles Times, VH1 has now countersued, alleging that the "unprofessional, erratic and deceitful conduct" of Gest had gone "far beyond the acceptable bounds of show business eccentricity."

According to the lawsuit, Gest's real-life vanity was equal to the most demanding divas. VH1 had to spend well over 30 times as much on his clothes as on Liza's. He required that his personal assistant and hairdresser be flown to NYC from LA for the filming, and demanded that the network spend $60,000 to rent an apartment near Liza's for the stylist. He also tried to block and disrupt filming when he felt that he didn't look his best, and he attempted to block the crew from filming or even contacting Liza without his consent.

And that's just for starters….

In addition, VH1 claimed that Liza and David told the network that the condo board had given full approval to extensive filming. Instead, no approval had been obtained — and ultimately, the condo board limited VH1 to 10 days of filming in the condo per year, far less than VH1 wanted.

Finally, Gest was so obsessed with cleanliness that he might even have embarrassed Felix Unger, the fastidious member of "The Odd Couple." The network alleged that Gest refused to allow crew members to sit on the furniture or even drink bottled water at Liza's Upper East Side condo. When some holes were drilled in the wall for recording equipment, Gest demanded that a VH1 crewman "stand by the hole with a vacuum cleaner in hand so as to instantly remove any dust."

Not even a vacuum cleaner is powerful enough to pick up all the dirt that will come out if this case goes to trial. Stay tuned.

Investigation Continues in EIDC Case

LOS ANGELES (AP) — County investigators conducted another round of searches as part of their probe into allegations of mismanagement by the troubled Entertainment Industry Development Corp.

Investigators with the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office searched the agency's Hollywood office Thursday, along with two storage facilities and the home of former President Cody Cluff. They found film permits issued from 1997 to 2002 and two city badges.

The searches were part of an expanding criminal investigation and follow a series of searches last year after disclosures that Cluff billed more than $500,000 in expenses and the EIDC contributed tens of thousands of dollars to many of its board members' political campaigns.

The agency coordinates the film permit process for the Los Angeles city and county governments, and promotes the area to the entertainment industry.

The Los Angeles Times reported Friday that investigators need the records to determine whether the EIDC was charging film companies the correct amount for the permits.

The badges, which bear the words "City of Los Angeles," could play a key role in a legal controversy at the heart of the investigation: whether the nonprofit corporation is a public or private entity. Cluff contends the EIDC is a private agency whose funds would not be subject to the scrutiny of the District Attorney's Office.

But prosecutors say the EIDC is a public agency in large part because it serves a government function: coordinating the issuance of city and county permits and services to film companies doing location shoots.

'Suge' Knight Ordered Released from Jail

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A parole board Tuesday ordered the release of rap music mogul Marion "Suge" Knight, who has been in jail since a Dec. 23 arrest for associating with gang members.

The board dropped four of five charges against Knight, 37, and gave him credit for the 61 days he's spent in Los Angeles County jail. One count of association with a known gang member was upheld.

Knight was to be released Wednesday. He will be required to spend 200 hours in community service aimed at persuading kids to avoid gangs, said Bill Sessa, spokesman for the state Board of Prison Terms.

"He's very relieved, but he's known that his conduct was not the type that should have sent him back to prison," said Knight's lawyer, David Chesnoff, after the hearing.

Knight served five years in prison for assault and federal weapons violations and was released on parole in August 2001.

The charge upheld against Knight related to his association with Tim McDonald, a security guard employed by Knight's record company, Tha Row, formerly known as Death Row Records.

Under the terms of his parole, Knight was permitted to associate with McDonald, who is listed by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department as a known gang member, only during work hours.

But Knight spent time with McDonald on several social occasions, Sessa said.

On one occasion, Knight accompanied McDonald to a hospital to visit a relative of McDonald who had been shot.

"While that's certainly something you would applaud from a personal standpoint, that was a violation of his parole," Sessa said.

Sessa said he believes Knight will be effective at deterring teens from joining gangs.

"He has a lot of influence. We believe kids will take it very seriously because he is so well known and can talk from his own life experience," Sessa said.

Chesnoff said Knight already planned speaking engagements with kids to discourage them from joining gangs.

"He was going to it anyway, so it's not any kind of punishment," Chesnoff said, adding, "Mr. Knight is a strong individual who is going to go back to work and make music and films and everything he's excellent at."

Knight remains on parole until April 2004.

Dionne Warwick Claims She Was Framed

NEW YORK (AP) — Dionne Warwick, who was arrested at an airport last year after authorities found marijuana in her bag, is blaming someone else for putting it there.

"Apparently, somebody that didn't want to get caught thought it would be better off in somebody else's bag," the pop singer recently told The Associated Press.

The 62-year-old was arrested in May and charged with a misdemeanor after baggage screeners at Miami International Airport said they found marijuana joints inside an empty lipstick container in her bag. Charges were dropped after Warwick agreed to a plea bargain deal, which included a drug treatment program.

Warwick says she's not a drug user. "Drugs of every sort, including aspirin, are not anything I even think about," she said.

The Grammy-winning singer, whose hits include "Do You Know the Way to San Jose," and "Walk On By," says she learned a lesson from the incident: "It taught me not to travel with an open bag."

"You never know what's going to end up in it," she said.

Police Seek Shooter of Busta Rhymes' SUV

NEW YORK (AP) — Police were searching Monday for the person who sprayed bullets into Busta Rhymes' sport utility vehicle a few minutes after the rapper left it parked on a Manhattan street.

The shooting happened Friday night outside Violator Records and Violator Management, which represents Rhymes, 50 Cent, Missy Elliott and other recording stars. It was the second time in a month that Violator's offices were the scene of gunfire.

No one was injured, said Sgt. Michael Wysokowski, a police spokesman. "It's not known if (Rhymes) was the intended target."

Rhymes, whose real name is Trevor Smith, arrived in a black GMC Suburban at Violator's offices in Chelsea around 10 p.m. Friday, police said. When he came out about 15 minutes later, he discovered that six shots had been fired into the passenger side of the vehicle.

A man answering the phone at Violator Management on Monday said Rhymes, 30, had no comment.

Last month, someone fired shots into the reception area of Violator's offices. Eleven people were in the back of the office at the time, but no one saw the shooter and no arrests were made.

Police officials have refused to discuss speculation that the shootings may have sprang from a violent feud between rival rappers.

Rhymes' hits include "Pass the Courvoisier Part II" with Sean "P. Diddy" Combs and Pharrell.

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