NEW YORK – A financial company specializing in asset acquisition sued Michael Jackson (search) on Monday, saying it is owed $48 million in fees for rescuing the singer's stake in the publishing rights to songs by the Beatles.
Prescient Acquisition Group Inc. (search) said in its lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Manhattan that the pop music celebrity enlisted it in November 2004 to provide financial advice and to secure refinancing of a $272 million debt to Bank of America.
On behalf of Jackson and his company MJ Publishing Trust (search), Prescient secured $537 million in financing from Fortress Investment Group LLC, enough for Jackson to pay off the debt and exercise an option to buy the remaining 50 percent of the Beatles library he didn't already own, the lawsuit said.
Prescient said it was entitled to an immediate payment of $24.8 million, which is 9 percent of the financing used to pay off the Bank of America debt and a $3.3 million advance to Jackson and his company.
Prescient accused Jackson of breach of contract, saying that it had done what was expected in a written agreement and that Jackson and his company were not entitled to "retain the benefits of those services in equity and good conscience without paying to Prescient an amount to be determined at trial."
A lawyer for Jackson did not immediately return a telephone message for comment Monday.