R. Kelly is facing a $1 million lawsuit after his former manager says his commission was used to pay off scandalous sex abuse claims.
Jeff Kwatinetz claims he came on board as R. Kelly's manager in 2008 during the child pornography trial that almost ended the singer's career. Now the talent guru says that while he "guided Kelly through the recording of two new albums, substantial multi-million dollar tours... a book deal, and a myriad of other appearances and events," Kelly told him he couldn't afford his 15-percent commission.
Why not? According to the suit, Kwatinetz claims R. Kelly said it was "because the monies were needed for payments to avoid lawsuits and adverse publicity resulting from Kelly's alleged [sexual misconduct]."
R. Kelly, whose song I Believe I Can Fly was featured on American Idol last season, adamantly refutes the ex-manager's claims.
"Jeff Kwatinetz's complaint is a collection of half-truths, distortions, and outright fabrications," a spokesperson for Kelly said.
"Mr. Kwatinetz is a disgruntled former manager who apparently feels the need to try to seek retribution for his discharge. It is particularly disturbing, given his job as a professional talent manager and trusted adviser, that he would feel the need to lash out and dish what he thinks is dirt against a former client."
"When the actual facts are presented, however, we are confident that his allegations will be found to be completely without merit."
Kwatinetz wants $1 million to cover his 15-percent commission.
Image courtesy PNP/WENN
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