Sly Stone Awarded $5 Million In Royalties From Ex-Manager, Lawyer
January 28, 2015 at 12:11 PM (PT)
Legendary funk master SLY STONE was awarded $5 million by a LOS ANGELES jury yesterday after suing his former manager and an entertainment attorney for diverting and misappropriating royalties owed him for more than 20 years, in a story originally reported by THE WRAP.
The LOS ANGELES SUPERIOR COURT panel deliberated for about two days before finding in favor of the singer against ex-manager GERALD GOLDSTEIN and his EVEN STREET PRODUCTIONS LTD., as well as lawyer GLENN STONE.
“They just wanted to punch this poor guy in the face,” NICHOLAS HORNBERGER, one of STONE's lawyers said after the verdict, indicating even more money should have been awarded.
The jury assessed $2.5 million in damages against EVEN ST. PRODUCTIONS, $2.45 million against GOLDSTEIN and $50,000 against attorney STONE.
STONE originally filed the lawsuit in JANUARY 2010 after testifying he didn't receive any royalty statements from GOLDSTEIN or anyone else, from three separate revenue streams.
SONY MUSIC was still collecting on advances originally paid out, BMI royalties were going straight to the IRS, while WARNER/CHAPPELL payments were going to a prior manager.
According to HORNBERGER, GOLDSTEIN was using the allegedly diverted funds for his own extravagant lifestyle and to acquire real estate properties. Attorney GREGORY BODELL, representing GOLDSTEIN and GLENN STONE, insisted the singer reneged on a 1988 agreement to make new records as part of an effort to revitalize his career. He also said the singer owned a half-interest in both companies and was paid millions of dollars during his association with the pair.
SLY STONE, whose real name is SYLVESTER STEWART, developed a cocaine problem and eventually fell on hard times, during which he lived out of a camper with electricity provided by a family in the Crenshaw District.
A second phase of trial to determine other issues in the case will take place later before Judge MARK MOONEY instead of a jury.
BODELL is planning further legal action on behalf of his clients, telling THE WRAP, “We believe the evidence on which the jury relied was incorrect, unsupported and will be changed by further proceedings. We’re disappointed in the jury behavior and decision and will challenge the outcome before the trial court.”