Tag Archives: celebrity legal news

SEC warns celebs about legal dangers of bitcoin endorsements

Celebs endorsing ICOs must now disclose if their social media posts are paid promotions.

When celebrities endorse things on social media, a lot of people tend to take their word for it. Now that some of them have also begun endorsing a controversial means of crowdfunding called “initial coin offering” or ICO, which was recently banned in China and South Korea, the US Securities and Exchange Commission has had to step in with a warning. Since ICOs are an unregulated means to raise money using cryptocurrencies, people could use them to sell products that don’t exist or to entice investors to sink their money into projects that will never materialize. That’s why SEC has decided to be on the lookout for celebrity ICO endorsements to protect potential investors.

The agency’s warning says:

“Any celebrity or other individual who promotes a virtual token or coin that is a security must disclose the nature, scope, and amount of compensation received in exchange for the promotion. A failure to disclose this information is a violation of the anti-touting provisions of the federal securities laws. Persons making these endorsements may also be liable for potential violations of the anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws, for participating in an unregistered offer and sale of securities, and for acting as unregistered brokers.”

SEC’s warning comes after The New York Times published a piece on celebrities like Floyd Mayweather and Paris Hilton endorsing various ICOs. The famous boxer help a Miami-based ICO called Centra Tech raise $30 million. According to the publication, Centra Tech’s founders created a chief executive that doesn’t exist. In addition, despite promising a Visa or a Mastercard debit card to its backers that will supposedly allow them to spend their Centra coins anywhere, the company reportedly doesn’t have any kind of deal or partnership with either credit card company.

Full Read – https://www.engadget.com/2017/11/02/sec-bitcoin-endorsements-warning/

Will Smith Slips Tyrese Gibson ‘$5m To Help With Legal Costs’

Tyrese has had his fair amount of problems of late, not least of all an ongoing legal battle with his ex-wife, Norma Gibson.

But after posting a confessional video last week where he hinted that he needed a little help from his celebrity friends, it appears that Tyrese’s luck may have come back in.

In an Instagram post yesterday, Tyrese revealed that his mate Will Smith – the Fresh Prince Of Bel Air – and wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, have given Tyrese an eyewatering $5 million to help cover his court costs. That’s a casual sum to just pull out of your pocket and give to a pal. Lucky for some, eh?

“My wife kept the news away from me cause I’ve been on with lawyers all day but our family and our sister Jada-Pinkett Smith and my brother Will Smith just sent us 5 million dollars to help keep us afloat,” Tyrese wrote in a caption to a photo of him laughing with Will Smith.

“You guys asked me to get off and stay off the Internet now that my daughter’s legal fees will be paid!”

Last Wednesday, Tyrese had posted an emotional video in which he revealed his frustration about several issues related to his legal battle with Gibson.

Read Full – http://www.ladbible.com/entertainment/celebrity-will-smith-slips-tyrese-gibson-5m-to-help-with-legal-costs-20171106

MARIAH CAREY SECURITY GUARD CLAIMS SEXUAL HARASSMENT

Mariah Carey‘s former security company has threatened to sue her … and the guy who owns the company says she constantly humiliated him by referring to him as a Nazi, a skinhead, a KKK member and a white supremacist.

Michael Anello‘s lawyer has prepared a draft of a lawsuit, claiming his company worked for Mariah from June 2015 to May 2017 and got stiffed on the balance to the tune of $221,329.51. Anello claims he was promised another 2 years which would add $511,000 to the tab.

Anello says Mariah humiliated him and his colleague by referring to them as members of the hate groups.

Anello also claims Mariah “wanted to be surrounded with black guys, not white people.”

The draft lawsuit also makes allegations of sexual harassment, claiming she committed “sexual acts with the intent that they be viewed by Anello.” Anello claims during a trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mariah asked him to come to her room to move some luggage and when he got there, she was wearing a see-through negligee that was open. He says he tried leaving but she insisted he move the luggage. He says he left the room and there was no physical contact.

Mariah’s people tell us they were in touch with Anello’s lawyer Monday and were agreeable to pay certain invoices, but we’re told Anello is not satisfied with the amount.

Mariah’s people have no information on the sexual harassment claim.

The lawyer for Anello says the lawsuit is now on hold, presumably because they are in settlement negotiations.

Full Read – http://www.tmz.com/2017/11/08/mariah-carey-security-guard-lawsuit-sue-nazi-sexual-harassment/

Harvey Weinstein Challenges His Firing in Arbitration

Harvey Weinstein has filed a claim in private arbitration alleging that he was wrongfully terminated from the Weinstein Company, according to a court filing.

The Weinstein Co. filed papers in Delaware Chancery Court on Wednesday, opposing Weinstein’s motion to expedite his suit in that court. Weinstein has sued his former company, seeking access to his personnel file and company email account.

In its opposition, the Weinstein Co. lawyers argue that he is improperly seeking to run around the discovery process in the arbitration case. Weinstein filed the suit in Delaware on Oct. 26. The court filings say that he initiated the arbitration case on the same day.

Weinstein was fired last month after the New York Times reported that he had settled numerous sexual harassment claims over three decades. Scores of women have since come forward to allege that they were harassed, groped, or raped by Weinstein. Weinstein has repeatedly denied all accusations of non-consensual sex.

Full Read – http://variety.com/2017/biz/news/harvey-weinstein-twc-arbitration-1202604907/

Disney Fights Unlicensed ‘Star Wars,’ ‘Frozen’ Characters at Children’s Birthday Parties

Yes, Hollywood studios tend to be fiercely protective of their intellectual property. These studios will often sue over unlicensed merchandise in the marketplace. Usually, these cases go away quickly and quietly. The defendants tend not to have the resources to fight back. Settlements and stipulated judgments are the norm. Well, not this time.

On Friday, summary judgment papers came in a lawsuit that Disney has filed in New York against Nick Sarelli, who runs an operation called Characters for Hire, LLC.

Disney alleges that Sarelli has a “knock-off business … built upon the infringement of Plaintiffs’ highly valuable intellectual property rights,” including the fictional characters Darth Vader, Iron Man and Elsa and Anna from Frozen. Disney is upset how this company “provides unlicensed and poor quality appearances and performances” by actors dressed as “iconic characters for themed events, such as children’s parties.”

The lawsuit claims that the costumed actors appearing at these events and the advertising associated with this enterprise represent a violation of both its copyrights and trademark rights.

Anyone who has ever visited Times Square in New York City might wonder about the costumed characters taking pictures with tourists for money. The New York Police Department once even tried to get Disney to crack down. Disney didn’t take the bait, but for whatever reason, Mickey Mouse has put its foot down for Characters for Hire.

Read Full – http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/disney-fights-unlicensed-star-wars-frozen-characters-at-childrens-birthday-parties-1049247