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Offline moonstreet

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Jackson tribute promoter sued for fraud
« on: January 25, 2011, 02:38:11 PM »
http://www.cbc.ca/canada/prince-edward-island/story/2011/01/25/pei-jackson-tribute-summerside-584.html?ref=rss

Jackson tribute promoter sued for fraud
Promised concert in P.E.I. was to have featured Beyonce, Timberlake
Last Updated: Tuesday, January 25, 2011 | 9:10 AM AT
CBC News
The City of Summerside, P.E.I., is suing an American concert promoter for fraud, saying it paid $1.3 million for a Michael Jackson tribute concert that did not exist.

'The Michael Jackson Tribute Show was, from start to finish, an elaborate fraud.'
— Statement of claim
The city filed papers Monday in a San Jose, Calif., courthouse against Katrina Berg Sussmeier and her promotion company, Starlink Productions. The city claims Sussmeier promised it could host the first concert of an official Jackson tribute, featuring stars such as Beyonce, Justin Timberlake, Rihanna and Usher.

Summerside would have kicked off the world tour July 24.

"In reality," reads the statement of claim, "the Michael Jackson Tribute Show was, from start to finish, an elaborate fraud."

The statement of claim describes how the city fell completely for Sussmeier's plans.

It says the city wired two separate payments of $650,000 to the promoter: the first in July 2009, the month after Jackson died, and the other in March 2010. The second payment was sent to the promoter despite red flags already being raised for the city.

The second payment was made despite growing doubts.

"Summerside officials became increasingly concerned about the status of the concert," says the statement of claim about the months leading up to that final payment.

The city is suing to get back the $1.3 million in taxpayers money, as well as for unspecified damages.

None of the allegations has been proven in court. A message left for the promoter Monday night by CBC News was not returned.




Offline moonstreet

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Re: Jackson tribute promoter sued for fraud
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2011, 06:13:47 PM »
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/prince-edward-island/story/2011/12/20/pei-michael-jackson-tribute-settlement-584.html

Michael Jackson tribute lawsuit to be settled
CBC News Posted: Dec 20, 2011 8:15 AM AT Last Updated: Dec 20, 2011 9:50 AM AT

The City of Summerside is moving to settle its lawsuit against an American concert promoter who said she would bring a Michael Jackson tribute concert to Prince Edward Island.

Katrina Berg Sussmeier and her company Starlink Productions of California told the city the tribute would include Justin Timberlake and Beyonce. The city paid $1.3 million for the concert, an amount equal to about $100 for every Summerside resident. It was supposed to happen in July 2009, just weeks after Jackson died.

Sussmeier has said Summerside sabotaged the concert by directly contacting the management of performers she was negotiating with.

The city filed a $1.3-million lawsuit earlier this year to get the money back, but has now ordered its legal team to settle. Finance chair Coun. Bruce MacDougall moved to settle as one of the first orders of business at city council's meeting Monday evening.

"I just want to say that there can be no discussion on this," said MacDougall as he made the motion.

"There will be no further information released until a later date."

The vote to settle was unanimous, but after council MacDougall hinted not everyone is happy with the offer currently on the table.

"We'd all like to have our money back," he said.

"But the council as a whole has agreed to an amount and we're moving this forward."

MacDougall won't say how much money the city is now looking for, but a source close to the case says Summerside can expect about US$600,000.

Once the papers are signed, MacDougall said, the city will release settlement details.

Offline moonstreet

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Re: Jackson tribute promoter sued for fraud
« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2011, 06:17:01 PM »
http://www.journalpioneer.com/News/Local/2011-12-19/article-2841971/City-aims-to-settle-concert-lawsuit/1

City aims to settle concert lawsuit
Published on December 19, 2011
Mike Carson


SUMMERSIDE – The City of Summerside has holstered its guns in the $1.3-million lawsuit against a California promoter and is looking to settle.

The former city council’s closed-door decision to send two payments of $650,000, a total of $1.3 million of taxpayers’ dollars, to Starlink Productions in San Jose California for a Michael Jackson Tribute Tour concert has been headline news for several months.

The concert never materialized and the city sued the promoter for fraud. The city wanted the money back, but that’s not going to happen.

On Monday night council approved a resolution to have its California legal counsel seek a settlement.

The settlement talk means there is little hope the city will see the return of all the $1.3 million.

Deputy Mayor Bruce MacDougall said council has agreed on an amount it would accept in a settlement but would not make the number public.

“I said I couldn’t talk about it because it’s before the courts,” MacDougall said. “It’s an agreement and until that agreement is signed there will be no further discussion.

"This is basically the resolution done up by city council that we’re OK, we’re accepting the agreement once this is forwarded on to our legal counsel in the States and they can move forward. We’ve been advised by our legal counsel that there be no further discussion and no information released until after the agreement has been signed.”

MacDougall said details of the agreement should be available once it is settled.
“I hope so,” he said. “We hope to give you some more information on some of the details, but right now we can’t disclose anything.”

Initially council appropriated $77,000 for the suit against the promoters. That money was quickly spent and the question now is how much more has been allocated to date.
MacDougall wasn’t sure.

“I would assume that there’s more,” he said. “That information will come out at a later date. Council has basically agreed to a settlement, but until that settlement is signed by both parties, nothing has been agreed upon.”

When pushed about the agreed number by council on a settlement, MacDougall was asked if it was around $500,000.
“I can’t disclose anything. We’ve basically been working on this for the last month or so, probably more than that.

MacDougall said the city opted to settle rather than pursue the lawsuit “because of the costs involved.”
“We’d all like to have our money back,” he said. “All of it back, but council, as a whole, agreed to an amount so we’re moving this forward through our legal counsel.”

MacDougall said he is not personally happy with a settlement.

However, “We’ve all agreed as a council to move with a number that we have, move forward and put it behind us."

Summerside Mayor Basil Stewart was as evasive as his deputy mayor on the settlement that the city is seeking.
“We just passed a resolution tonight on the advice of our lawyers and we’ll see how things unfold,” the mayor said. “Hopefully things will work out well.

“We’re advised strongly by our in-house lawyers, Johnathan Greenan and Derek Key, that this is the way the city should proceed and not have any further discussion on it and see how it unfolds.”

Stewart declined to comment on the notion that the city gave up on the suit because there was no hope of winning.
“I can’t comment on that,” he said. "We’re optimistic that things will work out fairly well.”
 
The resolution:

The City of Summerside passed a resolution Monday night to seek a settlement in its lawsuit against a California concert promoter.
 
Whereas the City filed an action in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Jan. 27, 2011, in the matter of City of Summerside v. Katrina Sussemier et. Al.:

And Whereas the City’s California legal counsel has been engaged in settlement discussions with representatives of several defendants names in the City’s action;

And whereas Council has been briefed by external legal counsel on the options and costs for advancing the City’s action, the prospects of success and recovery and the consequences of settlement;

And whereas Council has weighed the advantages and disadvantages of continuing litigation;

And whereas Council has reviewed privileged communications setting out proposed terms of settlement;

Be it resolved that: Nicholas F. Dunn and Bert H. Deixier, as attorneys for the City of Summerside, are hereby authorized to execute settlement documentation on behalf of the City of Summerside and to bind the City on such terms of settlement as previously directed by the City through its external counsel.”

Offline moonstreet

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Re: Jackson tribute promoter sued for fraud
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2012, 06:42:20 PM »
http://www.theguardian.pe.ca/News/Local/2012-04-28/article-2966258/Summerside-still-waiting-for-settlement-over-failed-Michael-Jackson-concert/1

Summerside still waiting for settlement over failed Michael Jackson concert
 Journal Pioneer summerside city hall Published on April 28, 2012  Mike Carson


Initially council approved $77,000 for the lawsuit against the promoters. That money was quickly spent and legal bills are now believed to be about $100,000.

SUMMERSIDE - Talks are still ongoing in a San Diego, Calif., district court on a settlement between the City of Summerside and a California-based concert promoter.

In 2009, the former city council voted in closed-door session to send two payments of $650,000, a total of $1.3 million of taxpayers' dollars, to Starlink Productions in San Jose, Calif., for a Michael Jackson Tribute Tour concert.

The concert never materialized and the city sued the promoter for fraud. The city wanted the money back, but that's not going to happen.

In December of last year, the current city council voted to put the fraud case on hold and seek a financial settlement with the promoter.

That decision leaves little hope that the city will see the return of the $1.3 million.

The city, on the advice of its legal counsel, opted to settle rather than pursue the lawsuit because of the costs involved in it.
It has been nearly four months since the city filed for a settlement and those talks are still underway.

"There still are some things going back and forth," said deputy mayor Bruce MacDougall. "It's still active. We had an update on it last week but it is still active."

said he believes the matter will be settled soon bringing an end the controversial issue.
"It's going to get finished," he said.
"Hopefully, we're closer now than we have been. That's about all I can say on it. It's still before the courts."

Initially council appropriated $77,000 for the suit against the promoters. That money was quickly spent and the question is now how much more has been allocated to date.

MacDougall wasn't sure but believed in is now in the range of $100,000.

In December, city council did decide on an amount it would accept in a settlement but that figure has not been made public.

Word out of California is that the city is seeking around $600,000 or about half of the initial investment.
MacDougall said he isn't certain when a final decision will be made.

"No I don't," he said. "I wish we would have heard something a year ago. It's still in the hands of our legal people right now and we're just waiting."

In the meantime, the public is waiting for city council to release an independent review on the concert issue.
Council contracted Ret. Lt.-Col. Denny Hopping to conduct the review and determine how the concert process fell off the rails and how this can be avoided in the future.

The city has had the report for several weeks and has been reviewing Hopping's findings.