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Johnny Depp sues business managers for $25 million

The actor alleges he discovered the fraud after terminating his contract with The Management Group.

Johnny Depp has launched a $25 million (£20.5 million) lawsuit against his former business managers.

The actor accused The Management Group (TMG) of fraud, breach of contract and professional negligence in court documents filed on Friday (13Jan17), according to Deadline.

The lawsuit also alleges Depp has lost tens of millions of dollars due to "gross misconduct" from TMG, who are trying to foreclose on one of his homes amid claims the actor failed to pay back a loan they gave him.

"As a result of years of gross mismanagement and sometimes outright fraud, Mr. Depp lost tens of millions of dollars and has been forced to dispose of significant assets to pay for TMG’s self-dealing and gross misconduct,” the documents, which also name The Mandel Co., Joel L. Mandel, Robert Mandel, First American Title Insurance Co., and 15 other unnamed defendants, state. “In essence, TMG treated Mr. Depp’s income as their own, available to either TMG or third parties to draw upon as desired."

Depp allegedly only learned of the misconduct after terminating his contract with TMG and hiring a new business manager.

The lawsuit also asks for a temporary restraining order and permanent injunction, which would prevent the firm from foreclosing on his home.

Michael Kump, attorney for TMG, issued a statement on Friday in response to the lawsuit, and claimed the Pirates of the Caribbean was "irresponsible" with his spending.

"For 30 years, Joel and Rob Mandel, and their company The Management Group, have been trusted business managers to some of the most successful individuals and companies in the entertainment business," Kump told The Hollywood Reporter. "For 17 of those years, they did everything possible to protect Depp from his irresponsible and profligate spending.”

Alleging the Oscar-nominated actor defaulted on the loan, which led to the impending foreclosure on his home, Kump claims Depp still owes TMG in excess of $4.2 million (£3.4 million).

"In December 2012, Depp faced financial ruin with the impending default on a $5 million (£4.1 million) bank loan. The Mandels bailed him out by loaning him $5 million, which he promised to repay by January 2014. Although Depp later changed managers, he never alleged any wrongdoing. In October 2016, with Depp still owing $4.2 million, the Mandels started non-judicial foreclosure proceedings against certain of Depp’s properties," he continued. "Depp’s lawsuit, filed on the eve of the sale of those properties, is a transparent attempt to derail the foreclosure by concocting and spreading malicious lies about the Mandels. His tactics and lawsuit will fail, and he will be forced to pay back the loan as promised."

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