MANHATTAN (CN) – A famous plastic surgeon extorted and defamed a company to investors, the media and federal regulators to try to recoup the $500,000 he invested in a predecessor company, Tree Top Industries claims in Federal Court.
Tree Top sued Dr. Steven M. Hoefflin, of California, who allegedly has done plastic surgery on a slew of Hollywood celebrities, including Michael and Janet Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor, Sly Stallone and Donald and Ivana Trump.
Tree Top claims Hoefflin put $500,000 into a company called Ludicrous, which was pushing “Net Thruster” technology that supposedly could deliver software and content at high quality and high speed.
Tree Top bought Ludicrous in late 2007, and says the Net Thruster technology was worthless. A series of disputes with Hoefflin ensued, Tree Top says, culminating with Hoefflin becoming “enraged” and “writing a series of accusatory and defamatory (extortion and blackmail) emails demanding the return of the Hoefflins’ Ludicrous investment.” (Parentheses in complaint.)
Tree Top claims Hoefflin defamed it to “members of various federal and state law enforcement agencies, regulatory organizations, private individuals and the media”.
Tree Top demands $10 million for defamation, extortion and other charges. It is represented by Robert Hantman.