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Migos sue lawyer, claiming they were ‘cheated out of millions of dollars’

(L-R) Takeoff, Quavo and Offset of Migos, arrive on the red carpet for the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute's benefit celebrating the opening of the 'Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garcons: Art of the In-Between' exhibit in New York City, on May 1 2017. Justin Lane / EPA

After allegedly being “cheated out of millions of dollars,” Migos, the popular American rap trio, is suing its longtime attorney Damien Granderson.

In the multi-million dollar lawsuit, groups members Quavious Marshall (Quavo), Kiari Cephus (Offset) and Kirsnick Ball (Takeoff) have accused Granderson of professional malpractice and unjust enrichment, saying he “abused his position of trust as Migos’ fiduciary from the moment he was retained as Migos’ lawyer,” according to files obtained by Rolling Stone on Wednesday.

Though the two-time Grammy Award nominees are currently signed to Quality Control Music (QCM) — which Granderson still represents — Migos expressed distate for their record label after suggesting Granderson had made “one-sided deals that benefited” not only him, but the label too, rather than the band. They suggested QCM was Granderson’s “higher priority” client as a result.

In the court document, filed by their new attorney Bryan Freedman, Migos expanded on this accusation, saying that Granderson had “concealed” information about a deal between QCM and Capitol Records that would “allow Capitol to distribute all albums that QCM produced” — including Migos’ records — without their full knowledge of the agreement terms.

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(L-R) Offest, Quavo, and Takeoff of Migos on stage at Mtn Dew Ice Courtside Studios during NBA All-Star 2019 at Epicentre on Feb. 16, 2019 in Charlotte, N.C. Alexander Tamargo/Getty Images for Mtn Dew Ice

With this deal in place, Freedman claimed that “QCM was actually profitting far more handsomely than was apparent from the face of the documents that Granderson personally presented to Migos for immediate execution.”

Because of this alleged act and his “primary loyalty” to QCM, Migos claimed that Granderson had “created an incurable conflict of interest” with the band.

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Of the matter, Freedman’s filing continues, saying Granderson “betray(ed) Migos when he failed disclose both the complete nature of his relationship with QCM and the complete nature of the conflict in representing both QCM and Migos.”

Freedman also said that the terms of Granderson’s deal with QCM “were, and are, extremely unreasonable to Migos.”

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Additionally, Granderson has been accused of taking “more compensation that is customary for other laywers in the field and of “incompetence” in relation to other negotiations with Migos.

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As well as Granderson and his law firm Granderson Des Rochers, the Stir Fry hit-makers have named their former attorney’s old firm, Davis Shapiro Lewit Grabel & Leven, as defendants in the suit. Migos’ publishing, merchandising and performing rights deals are also mentioned in the filing.

From the defendants, Migos is currently seeking damages in an unspecified amount, which is equal to the “millions of dollars” Granderson had supposedly robbed them of over the years, as well as legal fees and punitive damages.

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In response to Migos’ lawsuit, longtime QCM CEO Pierre (Pee) Thomas took to Instagram on Wednesday afternoon, refuting their claims and condemnation.

He wrote: “It is unfortunate that the same people that we have worked hard for, provided opportunities for, and championed for are now alleging that we have participated in any kind of immoral or unfair business practices or took advantage of them and their careers.”

“We have always practiced honest business and complete transparency from the beginning when we started Quality Control Music,” added Thomas.

“We built this business on family values, which has been so hard to do when you are dealing with so much pride and ego.”

Though QCM is not named as a defendant in the suit, Thomas suggested that Migos did not have to stay with the hip hop label.

“I love my artists and I love my team,” he wrote.

“Everyone has their own lawyers. I understand in this business that you are not always going to end with the people you started with.”

https://www.instagram.com/p/CCrk7B-BIDt/?utm_source=ig_embed

“I say that to say, I am not forcing anybody to be in business with us that has a problem and cannot communicate and does not want to work as a unit. Everything is negotiable. I wish my whole team more money, more blessings, and continued success,” Thomas concluded.

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As of this writing, Granderson has not publicly commented on the matter.

adam.wallis@globalnews.ca

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