Rihanna's mum gets court date

Maria Bradshaw,

Added 27 March 2013


RIHANNA’S MOTHER Monica Fenty will be summoned to appear before the Supreme Court next week so that defence attorneys representing the United States accountants accused of mismanaging her daughter’s expenses can take her deposition. Yesterday Chief Justice Marston Gibson granted permission for Principal Crown Counsel Wayne Clarke, representing the Registrar of the Supreme Court, to facilitate the taking of Fenty’s deposition. The Chief Justice ordered that overseas attorneys Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman & Dickler, representing Berdon LLP, be permitted to enter Barbados to take Fenty’s deposition; and also that Fenty present herself before the court either on April 2 to 5 and/or on April 10 to 12 for such deposition to be taken. Fenty was not present for the proceedings but is expected to be served the order by court marshals. The order also gave her or any person affected three days notice to apply to the court to vary or discharge the order. Rihanna, 24, Barbados’ first international pop star, filed the lawsuit against her former accounting firm Berdon LLP and accountants Michael Mitnick and Peter Gounis last year in the Manhattan Federal Court. The attorneys were granted permission by the Federal Court to come to Barbados and question Rihanna’s mother who signed the contract with Berdon LLP because Rihanna was a minor at the time. They filed a Without Notice Application for Request for International Judicial Assistance pursuant to the Hague Convention on the taking of evidence abroad in civil or commercial matter, claiming that Fenty had “refused to voluntarily appear for deposition” despite the defendant’s counsel’s willingness to travel to Barbados to conduct the proceedings. The defendants have  informed Barbados that the Federal Court overseeing the matter in New York has set a deadline for the taking of the deposition from Fenty. They also submitted that Fenty is able to testify as to Rihanna’s knowledge and consent to the terms of the agreement. In the lawsuit Rihanna and her tour company Tourihanna LLC, alleged that her former accountants failed to keep them informed of their financial position, failed to create proper concert tour budgets and generally mismanaged the finances so as to cause them millions of dollars in damages. The defendants in their counterclaim, submitted that they complied with any and all professional standards in rendering accounting services to the plaintiffs and that any losses which the plaintiffs suffered were due to their own frivolous spending. Further that the defendants attempted to counsel the plaintiffs regarding their financial position but the plaintiffs were not interested in discussing the matter despite the defendant’s efforts.


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