Kevin Hart’s Former Friend Files $12 Million Lawsuit in Sex Tape Saga

When Kevin Hart jumped on Instagram three years in the past to debate his weird 2017 intercourse tape scandal and the associated felony extortion costs filed — and ultimately dropped — towards his pal Jonathan “J.T.” Jackson, the celebrity comic mentioned he was pleased to be “transferring on” from that chapter in his life.

Now, the exact wording Hart used to ship that seemingly unscripted message to his thousands and thousands of followers is the topic of a brand new $12 million breach of contract lawsuit filed by Jackson in Los Angeles.

In his new 23-page grievance filed Wednesday and obtained by Rolling Stone, Jackson says Hart’s social media publish shared on October 27, 2021, was removed from spontaneous. As a substitute, it was the topic of a “meticulously negotiated” settlement settlement signed by the events almost three months earlier, Jackson reveals. In keeping with the lawsuit, Hart was contractually obligated to make use of “particular verbiage” that may “publicly exonerate” Jackson, an expert bowler and actor who had a minor function in Hart’s 2014 film Assume Like a Man Too. Hart purportedly was required to notice not solely that the felony costs towards Jackson had been dismissed however that Jackson was absolutely cleared of any involvement in an extortion plot and that the scandal had value Hart “a beneficial friendship.”

For example, Jackson alleges Hart explicitly agreed to say, “I misplaced somebody near me that I cherished and nonetheless have very a lot love for, or excessive ranges of affection for, and I’m proud to say that each one costs towards J.T. Jackson have been dropped, and he’s not responsible and had nothing to do with it.” In keeping with Jackson, 47, Hart “blatantly broke” their settlement.

In his Instagram video, Hart as an alternative mentioned, “J.T. Jackson has just lately been discovered not responsible, and people costs have been dropped towards him, and I can lastly communicate on what I as soon as couldn’t.” Hart famous that their friendship “was misplaced,” however the assertion appeared impartial. “It’s over, and I’m pleased that it’s over,” he mentioned concerning the saga. Hart didn’t embody the road that Jackson “had nothing to do with it.”

“The wording of Hart’s assertion, meticulously negotiated and detailed within the contract, was essential to repairing and remediating the extreme injury inflicted upon plaintiff’s fame by the baseless extortion allegations that Hart aggressively promoted and publicized,” Jackson’s new lawsuit says. The assertion Hart ended up delivering, in response to the grievance, “dilutes this intent by framing the exoneration extra as a conclusion to a chapter in Hart’s personal life fairly than a transparent and unequivocal exoneration of plaintiff.”

A rep for Hart, 45, didn’t instantly reply to Rolling Stone‘s request for remark.

The brand new lawsuit, filed by Jackson’s lawyer Daniel L. Reback, marks the most recent twist within the controversy that began when Hart and Jackson took a visit to Las Vegas collectively in August 2017. Just a few weeks later, in response to courtroom filings in a associated case, Hart’s then-pregnant spouse, Eniko Parrish, allegedly obtained an nameless message that mentioned, “Sadly your husband Kevin Hart is dishonest on you.” The message purportedly included a Dropbox hyperlink to an edited video exhibiting Hart engaged in an intimate act with a girl in his non-public suite on the Cosmopolitan resort. That night, Hart posted an Instagram video apologizing to his spouse and household. He admitted to a “dangerous error in judgment” and vowed he would “not enable an individual to have a monetary acquire off of my errors.” The publish led somebody utilizing the Instagram deal with Misterjood to go away a public remark that mentioned, “Give me $5 Million or I’m releasing the video. No must make this go public. You had your likelihood.”

Hours later, on September 17, 2017, the now-defunct web site Fameolous.com printed the surreptitiously recorded video footage. Inside days, TMZ reported that the FBI was investigating a multimillion-dollar extortion plot towards Hart. That very same week, mannequin Montia Sabbag held a press convention along with her then-lawyer, Lisa Bloom, to substantiate she was the girl within the video. She proclaimed her innocence, saying she had nothing to do with the recording or any alleged extortion. (Sabbag would go on to file a $60 million lawsuit towards Jackson and Hart, claiming the boys conspired to create and disseminate the footage to assist promote Hart’s Irresponsible Tour. A choose dismissed Sabbag’s civil claims towards Jackson in August 2022, citing Sabbag’s lack of “diligence,” most notably her failure to acquire Jackson’s case data from prosecutors, who by then had dropped their two extortion claims. Sabbag’s remaining claims towards Hart could be dismissed in June 2023 when Sabbag’s lawyer failed to seem at a last standing convention forward of trial.)

In keeping with Jackson’s new lawsuit, Hart and his attorneys performed an integral function within the occasions that led to his arrest. Jackson alleges Hart’s camp misled investigators about key proof shortly earlier than greater than a dozen armed legislation enforcement officers kicked down his door with weapons drawn and raided his residence on January 23, 2018. In a separate lawsuit towards members of the Los Angeles County District Lawyer’s Workplace filed final December, Jackson alleges the search warrant for the raid relied on a previous search warrant that described the Misterjood demand for $5 million because the alleged extortion try. Within the warrant, investigators described the demand as a “non-public message” despatched earlier than Hart posted his apology video.

Ultimately, the DA investigator who requested the search warrant admitted that the Misterjood message was a public remark, not a personal message, and that it was posted by somebody as a response to Hart’s public apology video. It was by no means linked to Jackson. After this revelation, prosecutors dismissed one of many two felony extortion counts. They ultimately dropped the complete case.

Jackson’s December lawsuit towards the DA officers alleges they violated his civil rights, fabricated proof, and engaged in a malicious prosecution. The officers responded with a movement to dismiss the motion in March, claiming they’re entitled to immunity. In addition they reaffirmed their allegation that electronics seized from Jackson throughout the 2018 raid revealed Jackson’s “possession of the intercourse tape and emails linked to [Jackson] trying to promote the tape to media shops earlier than it went public.”

In keeping with prior courtroom data cited within the dismissal movement, a media outlet obtained an e-mail from somebody making an attempt to promote the video earlier than its launch. The outlet allegedly shared the e-mail with Hart’s crew, and in response, Hart’s lawyer had somebody attain out to the nameless vendor posing as a intercourse tape dealer keen to buy the footage. Subsequent negotiations ultimately collapsed. Prosecutors alleged the e-mail deal with contacted by Hart’s faux dealer linked again to Jackson’s IP deal with.

For his half, Jackson is adamant he by no means dedicated a crime, didn’t promote the video and by no means extorted anybody. “Regardless of the allegations and the supposed connection of the IP deal with, the details are I used to be not arrested on the day of the raid on January 23, 2018. I used to be solely arrested on April 30, 2018, for a wholly unrelated incident regarding an alleged extortion e-mail despatched to Kevin Hart on April 27, 2018. This delay in arrest casts doubt on the power and reliability of the proof initially claimed by the DA’s workplace, particularly if any IP addresses have been associated,” Jackson mentioned in a e-mail despatched to Rolling Stone.

Jackson’s new lawsuit says “false accusations” have been the driving power behind his eventual arrest. Specifically, he alleges Hart “claimed” to have obtained an e-mail on April 27, 2018, from somebody demanding 20 bitcoins to stop the discharge of much more of the intercourse tape footage. The alleged e-mail — despatched seven months after the scandal broke — was reported to prosecutors and cited by a district legal professional investigator as a foundation for Jackson’s arrest. Jackson alleges in his new lawsuit that the copy of the e-mail ultimately shared by prosecutors signifies it was “fabricated.” He claims evaluation by two specialists decided it was created utilizing Microsoft Phrase on Could 17, 2019, greater than a yr after the alleged extortion try.

In his grievance, Jackson says his profession and fame have suffered profound hurt within the aftermath of the failed prosecution. He says extra hurt has resulted from statements made in Hart’s docuseries “Don’t F**Okay This Up,” a six-episode actuality present following Hart’s life that premiered on Netflix in December 2019. Within the collection, which continues to be streaming, Hart displays on the intercourse tape scandal and the tip of his friendship with Jackson. He mentioned it was “robust to speak about” the incident, lamenting the lack of “someone that you just really belief, love. That’s harm.”

The collection premiered in any case the fees towards Jackson had been scrapped, however Hart’s longtime pal and fellow comic Will “Spank” Horton nonetheless seems on the display summarizing prosecutors’ failed idea of the case: “I suppose he positioned a digicam within the room, videotaped the act, got here residence, edited up the video after which despatched him an e-mail or ransom of like, ‘Look I’ll launch this video for those who don’t pay me.’ I believe it was like $10 million or one thing like that,” Horton says. (After the collection premiered, Jackson began gearing as much as probably file a defamation lawsuit towards Hart, resulting in the 2021 settlement that’s now on the heart of Jackson’s breach of contract declare.)

Jackson says the now-dismissed felony costs and high-profile Netflix collection, purportedly seen by thousands and thousands of individuals, induced lasting hurt to his profession and well-being. “The persistent availability of this content material continues to perpetuate the false narrative, inflicting ongoing hurt to plaintiff’s skilled and private life,” the lawsuit says. Jackson, a Navy veteran, alleges the fallout has “exacerbated” his service-related PTSD and “induced vital psychological well being struggles.”

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Jackson is suing Hart and his Hartbeat Productions for breach of written contract, fraud and intentional infliction of emotional misery. He’s asking for not less than $12 million in actual damages in addition to punitive damages to be decided at trial.

“This whole ordeal has induced profound emotional misery and vital skilled setbacks for each my spouse and me. It’s extraordinarily unlucky that somebody I thought of my brother, my pots and pans for 16 years, we at the moment are on reverse sides of the fence,” Jackson mentioned in a press release despatched to Rolling Stone. “Regardless of every thing, I nonetheless want him properly. However it’s been three years since Kevin promised to assist clear my title, to no avail. So right here we’re. By this lawsuit, I purpose to revive my fame, search accountability, and be certain that such injustices don’t occur to others.”

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