(CN) - Embattled rapper DMX bailed on international tour performances, in part because he allegedly owed two women more than $1.2 million in child support and had liens on his passport, a booking agency claims in court.
Heavy Rotation claims it "worked very hard on DMX's behalf to book tour dates for him," and even rescheduled the tour twice, but DMX failed to perform because he couldn't get both child-support liens cleared from his passport in time for the January 2012 tour.
Earl Simmons, professionally known as DMX, hired Heavy Rotation in 2011 to promote his tour and help clean up his image online, according to the complaint in New York Supreme Court. Simmons has been arrested multiple times on charges that have included theft, drug possession and animal cruelty. In 2005 he served a 70-day sentence in New York for violating his parole when he crashed his SUV through an airport security gate.
When Heavy Rotation agreed to be his exclusive booking agent, Simmons allegedly disclosed only one lien on his passport, for $50,000 in child support he purportedly owed Divita Darcy. Days before the scheduled tour, the booking agency claims it discovered that the true amount of the lien was $285,000, not $50,000.
Heavy Rotation says it helped Simmons negotiate a payment plan with Darcy that would have cleared his passport in time for the tour, but the rapper and his manager failed to disclose that another woman was claiming Simmons owed her $1 million in child support.
Simmons insisted the child of the second woman was not his, so Heavy Rotation paid $3,000 to send a doctor to Simmons' hotel to perform a DNA test shortly before the scheduled tour, according to the lawsuit.
But the toured never happened, Heavy Rotation says.
Simmons "refused and/or failed to perform at the shows booked by Heavy Rotation, although the venues and club promoters were ready, willing and able to pay DMX," the lawsuit states.
As a result, Heavy Rotation says it lost its agent fees and the more than $112,800 it paid Simmons in travel expenses and advances, including $1,800 to bail himself out of jail and $20,000 to prevent the foreclosure of his wife's home.
Heavy Rotation says the tour debacle damaged its reputation with club promoters and venues, which threatened to sue if their deposits weren't refunded and have since stopped doing business with the agency.
The agency is also suing Simmons' manager, Jason Fowler of J-Mike Management and Entertainment, for allegedly booking domestic shows for DMX despite the exclusive contract and for telling promoters and venues that Heavy Rotation "was never authorized to book shows for DMX, and that DMX never received any money from Heavy Rotation."
It claims Simmons and Fowler authorized another agent, Streetlife International, to book shows for DMX in violation of their contract. And when DMX missed a show in Africa because he didn't have his passport in order, Heavy Rotation says Fowler tried to blame it on the agency, falsely accusing it of paying the deposit late.
Heavy Rotation seeks a court order blocking anyone else from booking shows for DMX and demands more than $442,000, including $100,000 in punitive damages, for breach of contract, unjust enrichment and fraud. It is represented by Gary Adelman of Meister Seelig & Fein in New York.