Hawaii resident says he did not receive benefit, pushes his dismissal from suit

A former CNMI resident now based in Honolulu has asked the federal court to dismiss him from a lawsuit over a UB40 concert that did not happen.

Jason H. Aldan, through counsel Robert T. Torres, insisted that Steven Brownstein has not alleged any facts to show that he was enriched and benefited from the cancelled concert.

In Aldan’s motion to dismiss, Torres pointed out that Brownstein’s claim that Aldan used the money for his personal use is not only contradicted by his complaint, “it is nothing more than a conclusory allegation.”

Citing precedent, Torres said the court is not bound by speculations and unwarranted conclusions.

Last April, Brownstein, who owns Steven Brownstein Entertainment, sued Aldan and Fredric Holloman and 10 unnamed co-defendants for allegedly defrauding him of $115,000 by misrepresenting that they will have the reggae and pop band UB40 perform in Guam and on Saipan in 2015.

Brownstein is suing Aldan and Holloman for fraud, breach of contract, and unjust enrichment.

According to the lawsuit, Aldan is involved in the entertainment business as RawCandyHawaii. Holloman, a California resident, is allegedly with Shae Entertainment/Management in La Jolla, California.

Brownstein asked the U.S. District Court for the NMI to hold the defendants liable to pay him damages, interest, and court costs.

According to the lawsuit, on June 2, 2015, Brownstein signed a contract with Holloman to have UB40 perform on Saipan and in Guam.

In Aldan’s motion to dismiss, Torres said Brownstein has not pleaded any facts that rise above the level of speculation that Aldan knew or believed that the matter was not as he represented.

Torres said Brownstein’s single factual allegation of misrepresentation regarding Aldan is that the latter misrepresented to Brownstein that the deposit had been made to UB40 and UB40 would perform on Saipan and Guam.

Torres said Brownstein has not pleaded a single fact to show that Aldan knew or believed that the deposit had not been made to UB40 and that UB40 would not be coming to Saipan or Guam.

The lawyer said Brownstein has alleged that Aldan put the deal together but has not alleged any contractual relationship with Aldan.

Torres said Brownstein’s contract was with Holloman.

He said Brownstein affirms that he wired $37,000 to Aldan, which the latter wired to Holloman two days later.

Based on these facts, Torres said, Brownstein claims Aldan conspired with Holloman and other defendants to defraud Brownstein.

“Factual allegations must rise above the level of mere speculation,” Torres said.

Torres said in order to meet the pleading requirements of fraud, Brownstein’s complaint must state the time, place, and specific content of the false representations, as well as the identities of the parties to the misrepresentation.

Torres said Brownstein has not indicated the dates or times of any of Aldan’s alleged misrepresentation.

He said Brownstein has not alleged where Aldan’s alleged misrepresentations took place.

Torres said unjust enrichment requires that the allegedly enriched person receive a benefit.

Torres said Brownstein has already established that Aldan sent the $37,000 to Holloman in California and that it was Holloman who had the money and kept it.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a veteran journalist who has covered all news beats in the CNMI. Born in Lilo-an, Cebu City in the Philippines, De la Torre graduated from the University of Santo Tomas with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He is a recipient of many commendations and awards, including the CNMI Judiciary’s prestigious Justice Award for his over 10 years of reporting on the judiciary’s proceedings and decisions. Contact him at

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