Rapper Pitbull Assailed for Sinking Speaker Line


     MIAMI (CN) – The rapper Pitbull strung a distributor along on a speaker-system deal he sank because of a conflict with Sony in sponsoring the World Cup, the partner claims in court.
     As described in the Aug. 11 complaint by Alpha Comm Enterprises, Armando Christian Perez aka Pitbull aka Mr. Worldwide aka Mr. 305 had plans in 2013 for a portable speaker line in the vein of Dr. Dre’s hugely popular Beats product.
     “Looking forward 2 having fun 2gether and taking over the market,” Pitbull allegedly said in an email to Alpha Comm representatives after a meeting on May 1, 2013.
     Under the impression that the Cuban musician was a co-owner of speaker manufacturer RockDoc, Alpha Comm says it “invested heavily in the RockDoc by Pitbull product line.”
     In reality, however, Pitbull was negotiating the deal on behalf of ACP-RD, a company Alpha Comm had never heard of before that furnishes Pitbull’s publicity rights and trademarks,” according to the complaint.
     In addition to misrepresenting Pitbull’s ownership of RockDoc, the rapper and his manager, Mike Calderon, concealed from Alpha Comm a deal regarding the 2014 World Cup that would prove fatal to the RockDoc by Pitbull speaker line.
     “Given Sony’s sponsorship of the World Cup, and its role as both a purveyor of speaker equipment and its leverage over defendants Pitbull, Calderon and ACP-RD – owing its control over the production and distribution of Pitbull’s music recordings – this information was material to Alpha Comm as a harbinger of potential conflicts of interest on the part of defendants Pitbull, Calderon and ACP-RD,” the complaint states.
     Sony and FIFA are not parties to the action.
     Pitbull likewise allegedly concealed that he was not in a position to “commit his name or image to the RockDoc by Pitbull product line” without consulting various specialists and legal representatives.
     “Had Alpha Comm known of the foregoing material misstatements and concealments described above, it would not have agreed to lend its experience, efforts, capital and customer contacts to sell the RockDoc by Pitbull line of portable speakers,” the complaint states.
     Six months after Alpha Comm signed the June 2013 three-year manufacturing agreement with RockDoc, Pitbull’s lawyer told it about the musician’s World Cup deal with FIFA.
     Because of the possible conflict of interest with World Cup sponsor Sony, Pitbull then withdrew from the RockDoc deal, “insisting that Alpha Comm not use his name or image in connection with the product line at issue,” according to the complaint.
     Alpha Comm seeks punitive damages for fraud, negligent misrepresentation and violation of Florida’s Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practice Act.
     It is represented by Guy Rasco from Devine, Goodman Rasco & Watts-Fitzgerald in Coral Gables, Fla.
     Pitbull’s attorney, Marcos Jimenez with Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman, declined to comment on the allegations. Jimenez’s assistant did note, however, that a similar case was dismissed in Cobb County, Ga., for lack of jurisdiction.
     Calderon and RockDoc could not be reached for comment on the lawsuit.

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