In his lawsuit, Martin claims that his nephew tried messaging him multiple times per day on social media, threatening to ruin his reputation unless he provided him with “compensation.”
Singer Ricky Martin has filed a $20 million lawsuit against his nephew, claiming that he lost millions of dollars after the man accused him of sexual assault.
According to CBS News, the 50-year-old singer—whose real name is Enrique Martin Morales—filed the lawsuit against his nephew Dennis Yadiel Sanchez in a Puerto Rico court.
In his filing, Martin claims that Sanchez has tried to “harass” the superstar in an attempt to make money.
“The present case is about a world-famous artist, who is being persecuted, besieged, harassed, stalked and extorted by a maladjusted person, whose interest is to obtain an economic benefit or, in the alternative, will continue his eagerness to assassinate the reputation and integrity of the artist,” the lawsuit states. “The situation has continued despite the Defendant voluntarily withdrawing from an action he had commenced against Plaintiff based on falsehoods, during which he admitted under oath that he had never been sexually assaulted by Plaintiff.”
CBS News notes that, earlier this summer, a Puerto Rico court issued a restraining order against Martin under the U.S. territory’s domestic violence law.
However, police did not respond to CBS News’ request for further information, and it is not readily apparent who requested the restraining order.
When the restraining order was issued, Puerto Rico-based El Vocero said that Martin and “the petitioner” had dated for several months.
After Martin and the petitioner separated, the restraining order alleges that Martin did not accept the break-up and had been sighted “loitering” outside of the petitioner’s home at least three times.
Nevertheless, Martin claims that—a month after the restraining order was withdrawn—Sanchez began messaging Martin on Instagram, saying that “unless he is economically compensated, he will continue with his campaign to assassinate his reputation and integrity, through false and malicious imputations.”
Martin’s attorneys note that, before Sanchez filed the lawsuit, Sanchez sent Martin up to 10 messages per day for several months, and publicly boated about his relationship with the famous singer.
Now, Martin alleges that his nephew’s misconduct have cost him millions of dollars in lost advertising opportunities.
“The reckless, malicious and culpable actions by defendant Sánchez were motivated by the desire to expose plaintiff to hatred and disdain from his fanbase, to threaten his business opportunities and to destroy his reputation,” the suit says. “As a matter of fact, such actions caused Plaintiff to have multimillion dollar-contracts and present and future artistic projects cancelled.”
Martin also says that he no longer feels safe in Puerto Rico, and that the sexual assault allegations have damaged his reputation.
“In addition, such culpable actions have also caused damage to plaintiff’s reputation, who, until the protective order became public knowledge, enjoyed an impeccable reputation earned through his long artistic and altruistic career for the last almost 40 years of his life,” the lawsuit says.
Martin is seeking approximately $20 million in recompense.