Tommy Lee has issued a statement denying that he left MÖTLEY CRÜE, stating that he hopes he can work any outstanding issues with the other members of the group.
"I am a founding member of MÖTLEY CRÜE," he said. "Based on internal band issues aired publicly, my future with the band is uncertain. I have tried to meet with my bandmates repeatedly without success but have informed them that I'm not walking away from my band of 25 years. It troubles me that the current legal issues which were filed by the corporations against my personal manager are separating us and causing more dysfunction. I hope we can work this out amongst ourselves."
According to the amended complaint filed by MÖTLEY CRÜE against artist manager Carl Stubner and his three companies Sanctuary Group, Inc., Sanctuary Artist Management, Inc. and Carl Stubner Productions, Inc., Lee "recently informed [bassist Nikki] Sixx and [guitarist Mick] Mars, the shareholders of MCI [Motley Crue, Inc.], that he was resigning from the band and his resignation was accepted."
MÖTLEY CRÜE issued a press release yesterday claiming that the group's amended complaint contains "newly obtained evidence" in its lawsuit against Stubner, consisting of statements from band members Vince Neil, Nikki Sixx and Mick Mars as well as ten sworn declarations from key professionals associated with the band, which "demonstrates beyond any question that Stubner was a manager of MÖTLEY CRÜE and not just the manager of Tommy Lee as he has previously claimed in press releases and legal filings. The newly obtained evidence supports and confirms allegations in the amended complaint filed yesterday in Los Angeles Superior Court that Stubner breached his fiduciary duties to MÖTLEY CRÜE by orchestrating a scheme for his personal financial gain at the expense and to the detriment of the band." The press release adds, "Even though he received approximately a million dollars in commissions from MÖTLEY CRÜE, Stubner used his positions as the band’s manager and the manager of one of the band members to demand a higher commission for himself. The amended complaint contends that his motivation was pure greed. The new evidence also confirms that Stubner demanded tickets from the band that he resold at 'scalper' prices for his own gain."
The lawsuit seeks compensatory damages of more than $20 million for lost earnings and profits resulting from the defendants' actions. The lawsuit also seeks punitive damages because, as claimed in the amended complaint, the defendants' "despicable" actions were undertaken "fraudulently, maliciously and oppressively."
In CRÜE's original lawsuit, which was filed on June 18 in Los Angeles County Superior Court, three of the group's founding members (Nikki Sixx, Vince Neil and Mick Mars) through Motley Crue Inc., claimed Stubner forced Tommy Lee to "to become engaged in 'reality' projects that were bad career moves for Lee, harming [Sixx, Mars, Neil and Lee], the MÖTLEY CRÜE brand and Lee's own image." The suit called the low-rated NBC show "Tommy Lee Goes to College" a "critical disappointment and a ratings disaster," adding it painted Lee as "incoherent, lazy and incompetent" and made him "look like a laughing stock who could not carry a drum beat." The suit also claims Lee's participation on "Rock Star: Supernova" "diminished the public's interest in Lee and their overall perception of his musical talents."
Because Lee was so busy doing reality TV, the band says he was unavailable to tour with the CRÜE, thus causing the cancellation of several key concert dates. The band claims that they lost $8 million in ticket and merchandise revenue because of Lee's scheduling conflicts. The band claims these conflicts were "both real and concocted" by Stubner to "leverage his control over Lee to his financial advantage and to MÖTLEY CRÜE and Lee's detriment."
Tommy Lee's attorney Barbara Berkowitz issued a statement on June 20 claiming that Lee "is not an individual participant in the lawsuit filed [on June 18] by the corporation, Motley Crue, Inc. against Lee's personal manager, Carl Stubner and Sanctuary Management. Mr. Stubner and Sanctuary do not manage MÖTLEY CRÜE, however they continue to represent Tommy Lee personally."
The statement from Tommy's attorney went on to say that "Mr. Lee was neither consulted regarding this matter nor authorized the lawsuit. Mr. Lee has not made any allegations against his current personal manager. Mr. Lee feels fortunate to have been part of the MÖTLEY reunion tour, as well as other opportunities outside of MÖTLEY CRÜE over the past several years. It is unfortunate that others believe that they all could have made more money had Mr. Lee exclusively participated in the band that he co-founded in 1980. However, Mr. Lee is a versatile artist, and is grateful that he participated in other projects as well."
MÖTLEY CRÜE's litigation attorney is Skip Miller of Miller Barondess, LLP in Los Angeles.