Russell Simmons is suing his ex-wife Kimora Lee Simmons and her new husband, Tim Leissner, for using Simmons’ shares of his Celsius Energy Drink company to pay for attorney fees for Leissner.
via: The Blast
In court documents obtained by The Blast, the entertainment mogul claims he, his ex-wife, and her husband invested tens of millions of dollars in the Celsius energy drink company. Kimora and Leissner allegedly “conspired with each other, aided and abetted each other and together engaged in fraud by causing an unlawful conversion and fraudulent transfer” of the Celsius shares without Russell’s consent or knowledge. He claims that Kimora and her new husband transferred his shares to themselves. Russell claims his new accountants discovered a “substantial unexplained change” in his interests in Celsius… something that didn’t sit well with him and his lawyers.
Kimora’s husband plead guilty to criminal conspiracy to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and conspiracy to commit money laundering in November 2018. Simmons claims Kimora and Leissner “knew full well that Leissner would need tens of millions of dollars to avoid jail time, stay out on bail, and forfeit monies for victim compensation” – $44 million to be exact. Russell claims they used their Celsius shares as collateral for Leissner’s bail, and Russell wants his Celsius shares returned.
Russell is asking a judge for damages against Kimora and Leissner and believes he should be awarded restitution for interest and equal value for the wrongfully obtained shares. Interestingly, Russell says he sent his ex-wife a letter on May 5, 2021, pleading with her to do the right thing and avoid a lawsuit. He wrote to her, “to get the important family matter of the Celsius shares to a close so that we can put it behind us and carry on as the loving united front we have always been.”
A few weeks ago, Russell wished Kimora a happy birthday on his Instagram. “Happy birthday kimora. we have accomplished so much. God willing our family and friendship will continue to thrive. keep your head up in the clouds with our stock !!! remember with Gods love all things are possible love always,” he wrote at the time.
Russell’s pleasant demeanor turned negative in his letter to Kimora. He said, “I am shocked and saddened to see how your side has behaved in response to my repeated attempts to get an agreement from you to rightfully and legally reaffirm my 50% of the Celsius shares..which have been locked up with the government after being used for your husband’s bail money.”
Neither Kimora or her husband Tim have responded to the suit.