Alanis Morissette sues ex-manager over £3.5m 'fraud'
Published 19/05/2016 | 05:11
Singer Alanis Morissette is suing her former business manager and his company, claiming he siphoned nearly five million dollars (£3.5 million) from her account.
The Canadian star claims Jonathan Schwartz "violated her trust" by withdrawing 4.7 million dollars (£3.2 million) from her bank account, according to papers filed with Los Angeles County Superior Court.
Mr Schwartz is accused of convincing Morissette that she was in "tremendous financial shape" when he had led her "on a road that could have led to financial ruin", the complaint states.
The Ironic singer is suing him and GSO Business Management for breach of duty, fraud and negligence and seeking damages of 15 million dollars (£10 million).
Mr Schwartz served as Morissette's business manager from 2009 to 2016 but he was fired for failing respond in a timely fashion to Morissette's requests for details of her personal finances, according to the lawsuit, published online by the Los Angeles Times.
After hiring a new manager in April 2016, records showed "at least 116 separate cash transfers to Schwartz from Morissette's funds" over four years, totalling 4.7 million dollars (£3.2 million), it is claimed.
When questioned about the cash withdrawals, Mr Schwartz allegedly said Morissette "spent a lot of cash" and he had withdrawn the funds to keep in a safe so she had access to them - an allegation denied by the singer.
Mr Schwartz then allegedly claimed the money was for an investment by Morissette in at least one illegal marijuana "grow" business, which she also denies.
According to the complaint, Mr Schwartz "enthusiastically encouraged" Morissette to spend money, insisting she and her future grandchildren were "set for life". He repeatedly encouraged her to turn down offers to perform at concerts, including a lucrative set of five shows in Las Vegas, arguing that she was financially secure, the lawsuit states.
Morissette, 41, also claims eight million dollars (£5.5 million) was transferred out of investment accounts that Mr Schwartz "promised would never be touched".
GSO is also suing Mr Schwartz and seeking to expel him as a member of the firm.
The company's complaint states: "The investigation revealed that Mr Schwartz was burning through money to sustain a lavish lifestyle, including a 50,000 dollar (£34,700) vacation to Bora Bora and an outstanding gambling debt of 75,000 dollars (£52,000) at a casino in the Bahamas. He also owes the US government a substantial sum for unpaid taxes."