By City News Service
A former business manager for a son of legendary Jamaican Reggae icon Bob Marley has dropped his lawsuit that alleged his idea for the marketing of a brand of coffee was stolen.
Shane Whittle filed the lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court on Aug. 28 against Rohan Marley and several entities created during the coffee venture, including Beverly Hills-based Jammin' Java Corp. He alleged breach of contract, fraud, conspiracy and breach of fiduciary duty.
Attorneys for Whittle filed papers on Nov. 21 asking that the case be dismissed. The documents did not divulge whether a settlement was reached or if Whittle was not pursuing the case for other reasons.
Whittle's lawsuit stated that he was induced to invest $600,000 in the project and was owed his share of its profits.
According to the complaint, Whittle and Marley agreed in 2007 to pursue the plaintiff's idea to develop a brand of coffee using the latter's name and likeness. Whittle was a successful businessman who developed the idea for the Marley Coffee Venture, according to his court papers.
But after Marley Coffee became highly profitable, two of the companies being sued by Whittle, Fifty-Six Hope Road and Hope Road Merchandising, began asserting that they owned the rights to any variation of the Marley name, Whittle alleged.
"Rohan Marley was part of this scheme and conspiracy to wrongfully move and/or transfer Marley Coffee trademarks, licenses, brand and/or intellectual property to Fifty-Six Hope Road," the suit alleged.
Marley and the companies also entered into deals with Viva Beverages and other businesses licensing them to use the Marley Coffee name without Whittles' consent, his complaint alleged.
In their court papers, lawyers for Marley alleged that Whittle and his lawyer "deliberately went into the secure email boxes of Rohan Marley and Jammin' Java Corp. to spy on their communications with counsel."