'Thriller' jacket

Jackson brothers sue over 'Thriller' jacket deal

Three of Michael Jackson's brothers claim in a lawsuit filed this week that they've been "duped" by a company selling replicas of jackets worn by the pop icon.

The endorsement deal was the first involving Michael Jackson's oldest son, Prince, who posed for pictures with his uncles as they autographed the limited-edition jackets.

The "Thriller" and "Beat It" jackets went on sale online last week, but Jackie, Tito and Marlon Jackson filed a lawsuit Tuesday alleging the marketer bounced a check to them for travel expenses.

Steeve Bohbot, owner of Connected Internationals Sales, also failed to pay each of the three brothers the $100,000 each for signing the 1,000 leather jackets, the suit, filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court Tuesday, contends.

"Plaintiffs, tired of chasing Bohbot for the moneys, have no choice but to seek redress from the courts," it said.

The suit alleges that Bohbot told the Jackson's that the delayed payment was caused by a problem with the jackets' delivery to Amazon.com, but it was not true.

The brothers believe the company is insolvent and has not paid other creditors, including Michael Jackson's estate, which authorized the sale, the suit said.

Bohbot did not respond to CNN calls for comment.

The Jackson brothers, who recently reunited onstage for a series of concerts, gathered at West Hollywood's Bar Marmont on October 29 to sign the jackets. Prince Jackson, who has previously stayed away from commercial endorsements, joined them at the event, but he did not autograph the jackets.

Prince Jackson is not involved in the lawsuit since he was not part of the marketing agreement. It was not disclosed how much he was to be paid to attend and pose with the jackets.

Connected International Sales "duped plaintiffs into a scheme to sign 1,000 collectors' jackets," the suit said.

Michael Jackson debuted the red "Beat It" and red and black "Thriller" jackets, designed by Marc Laurent, in 1983. The Jackson brothers signed 500 of each jacket, which are still on sale for $2,350.

(Published by CNN - November 17, 2011)

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