Promoter Says Bogus Hip-Hop Agents Rolled It

     MANHATTAN (CN) – People posing as agents for hip-hop artists snookered a concert promoter for $25,000, the promoter claims in court.
     Phat Camp sued Joshua Benyard, Brandon Brathwaite, Lynn Edmondson, Perry Rodriguez, Carlyle Anthony, Greggory Benyard, Sharon Pecker, Carole Pecker and Patranelle Brathwaite in New York County Supreme Court.
     The defendants claimed they could book Billboard chart-topping rapper ASAP Rocky and his collaborator ASAP Yams for a concert at New York’s Highline Ballroom, according to the complaint.
     Steven Rodriguez, who is the real ASAP Yams, and Rakim Meyers, the actual ASAP Rocky, are not parties to the complaint, nor are they accused of any wrongdoing.
     In March, Benyard arranged for a meeting between Phat Camp and the ersatz rappers to iron out a proposal for an April 28 concert at the Highline Ballroom for $10,000, half to be paid upfront, according to the complaint.
     Phat Camp claims it wired the $5,000 immediately to a bank account, as instructed, then and launched a pricy ad campaign with radio spots and flyers.
     The bogus agents also offered Kendrick Lamar, whose debut album “good kid, m.A.A.d. city” was certified gold, Phat Camp claims.
     Lamar is not a party to the complaint either.
     “After several additional meetings and/or communications, an agreement was reached,” the complaint states. “In exchange for said appearance and/or performance, plaintiff would pay $45,000.00, with $25,000.00 to be paid up front and $20,000.00 to be paid after said appearance and/or performance.”
     But on April 11, attorneys for the actual ASAP Yams and ASAP Rocky sent a cease and desist letter, Phat Camp says.
     “Upon investigation, information and belief, defendants had in fact engaged in an elaborate scheme to defraud and otherwise convert and/or steal as much money as they could from plaintiff and/or its representatives,” the complaint states.
     Phat Camp claims it identified the impersonators as defendants Brandon and Patranelle Brathwaite.
     They were using the cell phone of defendant Edmondson, according to the complaint.
     Defendants Benyard, Rodriguez and Anthony participated in multiple meetings to add legitimacy to the dealings, Phat Camp claims.
     The complaint does not specify what role defendants Sharon and Carol Pecker allegedly played in the scheme, but it claims that as many as 10 unidentified people may have been in on it.
     Phat Camp demands treble damages and punitive damages for RICO fraud, conversion and breach of contract.
     It is represented by David Kreizer, with Fisher, Byrialsen & Kreizer.

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