The U.S. District Court for the NMI granted yesterday Saipan concert promoter Steven Brownstein’s motion to dismiss a counterclaim filed against him by a former CNMI resident who is now based in Honolulu in connection with the derailed concert of the English reggae and pop bond UB40 in Guam and Saipan in 2005.
Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona ruled that Jason H. Aldan has not stated a claim for abuse of process. She dismissed without prejudice Aldan’s counterclaim against Brownstein.
Manglona, however, allowed Aldan to amend his counter-complaint by Aug. 6, 2018, noting that Aldan has not previously done so.
In April 2017, Brownstein, who owns Steven Brownstein Entertainment, sued Fredrick Holloman and Aldan in federal court for allegedly defrauding his company of $115,000 by misrepresenting to have the UB40 perform in Guam and Saipan in 2015.
Holloman is a San Diego, California resident that engages in the entertainment business.
Aldan works for CNMI Medical Referral in Hawaii, but also has worked from time to time with Brownstein to bring entertainers to Saipan.
Brownstein filed claims of breach of contract by Holloman, and fraud and unjust enrichment by Holloman and Aldan.
The court issued summonses for both defendants, but only Aldan was served.
In July 2017, Aldan, through counsel Robert T. Torres, filed a motion to dismiss the fraud and unjust enrichment claims against him.
In November 2017, the court granted that motion but gave Brownstein leave to amend.
On Jan. 31, 2018, Brownstein filed an amended complaint, naming only Aldan as a defendant and omitting the breach-of-contract claims against Holloman.
In response, on Feb. 28, 2018, Aldan filed a motion to require joinder of a necessary party, Holloman.
The matter was resolved when the parties stipulated that Brownstein would “file a second amended complaint” naming Holloman as a defendant in this civil proceeding.
On May 4, 2018, Brownstein filed a second amended complaint naming both Aldan and Holloman as defendants, and a new summons for Holloman was issued.
In response, Aldan filed his answer to the second amended complaint and counterclaim, alleging abuse of process by Brownstein.
Aldan counterclaims for abuse of process. He asserts that Brownstein is using this lawsuit to make him (Aldan) “a scapegoat for the backlash, bad press, and embarrassment that Steven Brownstein Entertainment has encountered” when fans were stuck with tickets to canceled concerts.
Brownstein, through Steven Pixley, then moved to dismiss the counterclaim.