J.Lo Sues to Cut Ex-Rep Out of Her Life

Thursday July 03, 2003 10:00 AM EDT

Jennifer Lopez is telling Benny Medina, credited as the man who helped make her a star, to butt out of her life. Or, at least, stop taking commissions on deals he reportedly arranged for her.

The singer-actress, 33, filed a petition with California's labor commission on Wednesday that accuses Medina of failing to have a valid talent agent's license during the five years he managed her career, reports the Associated Press.

For his part, Medina, who was slapped with his legal paper from Lopez Wednesday while he was watching the new Arnold Schwarzenegger movie "Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines," tells New York's Daily News, "I took the afternoon to watch 'T3,' not knowing I was to be terminated."

Lopez's attorney, Barry Hirsch, told the AP that Medina -- who was employed as J.Lo's manager until she fired him last month -- inappropriately engaged in talent agent work. These include his reputedly negotiating deals for her upcoming movie "Shall We Dance?" and a sponsorship agreement with L'Oreal cosmetics.

In Lopez's legal papers, first reported by "Entertainment Tonight," the star seeks to invalidate all remaining partnerships between Medina and Lopez. She is also calling for Medina to repay everything he earned during the five years he worked for her, plus 10 percent interest.

Medina and his Handprint Entertainment company were set to receive 10 percent of her entertainment earnings -- excluding music work, for which she would pay 15 percent, according to the document. She said she also agreed to pay 10 percent of other earnings, which included work in the fashion industry.

Medina tells the News that Lopez's accusations - among other things, she also claims he siphoned off $100,000 of her money for his personal use - are "untrue and offensive." He also says, "A $100,000 amount would be a drop in the bucket to the amount of money she grossed."

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Medina is also claiming that per her contract with him, Lopez is still a client of his company's.