×

Cardi B Claims Abuse of Trust, Exploitation in Counter-Suit Against Former Manager

Followers of Klenord “Shaft” Raphael on Instagram may have noticed that, despite an ongoing lawsuit against star rapper Cardi B, the KSR Records founder has been boasting of her chart achievements. That may cease following the latest legal salvo filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

In the counter-suit, filed on July 5 by the artist, Cardi B (real name: Belcalis Almanzar) contends that the original suit by Shaft against her new managers, Kevin “Coach K” Lee and Pierre “Pee” Thomas, “arises out of the deceitful and disloyal conduct of a self-serving and controlling personal manager.” She goes on to assert that “trust was abused” during their professional time together. Shaft began managing Cardi B in 2014 while she was still employed as an exotic dancer and orchestrated her joining the cast of VH1’s “Love & Hip Hop” reality show.

As Cardi B’s star rose, “so too did Shaft’s greed,” says the suit. “Shaft proved increasingly willing to take advantage of, deceive and exploit Ms. Almanzar, and he had the ability to do so through complete control over all legal documents and virtually every dollar that Ms. Almanzar earned in the entertainment business.”

Financial arrangements between KSR and Atlantic Records are also detailed in the suit, which reads: “As Ms. Almanzar’s talents were increasingly being recognized by the world, Shaft unconscionably used his position
of trust as a fiduciary to extract a larger portion of Ms. Almanzar’s earnings. In the deal that Shaft orchestrated with Atlantic Recording Corporation, Shaft inserted his wholly-owned entity KSR to be paid 50% of all of Ms. Almanzar’s record royalties and required Ms. Almanzar to assign all copyrights in any audio or video recordings to KSR as well as 50% of Ms. Almanzar’s authored compositions.”

In addition, the artist claims KSR was “negligent” in their record-keeping responsibilities despite multiple requests to show a proper accounting of funds. Reads the suit: “Shaft and/or KSR eventually prepared rough, cryptic spreadsheets for individual performance dates in 2017, which failed to include much of the most basic expense information necessary to determine whether even these inadequate sketches were accurate or reliable.”

In April, Shaft sued Cardi B along with Solid Foundation, the management wing of Quality Control, which is headed by Kevin “Coach K” Lee and Pierre “Pee” Thomas, demanding judgement against the rapper and damages of no less than $10 million. Shaft claimed that Cardi B froze him out of her career and repeatedly defamed him.

In March, Variety broke the news that Cardi B was being represented by Coach K and Pee.

Paul LiCalsi of the firm Robins Kaplan LLP is litigation counsel to Cardi B.

Read the lawsuit below: 

More Music

  • Sturgill Simpson Announces New Anime Film,

    Sturgill Simpson Announces an Anime Film — and Album to Go With It — at Comic-Con

    From alt-country hero to anime producer, Grammy winner Sturgill Simpson is broadening his horizons. Appearing on a panel Saturday night at Comic-Con, Simpson announced an animated Netflix film, “Sound & Fury,” that he’s producing and wrote the original story for, to be accompanied by a simultaneously released album this fall he describes as “sleazy, steamy [...]

  • Garth Brooks Brings Blake Shelton to

    Garth Brooks Brings Blake Shelton to Boise for a Beer-and-Tears Stadium Gig (Watch)

    “I was singing with Garth Brooks! I’m freaking out!” said Blake Shelton, shortly after joining his fellow Okie on stage in Boise, Idaho Friday night. Shelton had flown out to the first of Brooks’ two nights at Albertsons Stadium to shoot a live music video for “Dive Bar,” the recently recorded duet that Brooks just [...]

  • Cara Delevingne'Carnival Row' TV show photocall,

    Cara Delevingne Says Her 'Carnival Row' Character Is Pansexual, Explains Defending Taylor Swift Against Justin Bieber

    Cara Delevingne and Orlando Bloom’s love affair may be at the center of the upcoming Amazon Prime Video series “Carnival Row,” but the British actress doesn’t want viewers to assume her faerie character is heterosexual. “I’m a pansexual faerie,” Delevingne told Variety during an exclusive one-on-one interview at Comic-Con adding that there are other queer [...]

  • Ryan Adams Sexual Harassment

    Ryan Adams Re-Emerges After Sexual Misconduct Allegations

    Singer/songwriter Ryan Adams, who was blasted with accusations of sexual misconduct earlier this year, including inappropriate texting with a minor, re-emerged on social media with a long post early Saturday. “I have a lot to say. I am going to. Soon,” he wrote. “Because the truth matters. I know who I am. What I am. [...]

  • J. Cole

    Apple Music Launches 'Rap Life' Playlist

    Apple Music announced the launch of “Rap Life,” a new global playlist focusing on contemporary rap artists and culture. It replaces the former “The A-List: Hip-Hop” playlist. Said Ebro Darden, Apple Music’s Global Editorial Head of Hip-Hop and R&B: “We flipped it to dig deeper into into the lifestyle [and to] keep pushing the culture [...]

  • New York City NYC Placeholder

    CityFM Podcast Takes a Deep Look at New York’s Music Scene (Listen)

    First among the many projects listed at the beginning of New York Music Month in June was a WNYE radio show and podcast called CityFM that promised to “explore the city’s music culture, emerging artists and trends, and upcoming events told through the lens of what’s happening around the city in Summer 2019.” And while [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content