Celebrities Behaving Badly, Legal Drama

Celebrities Behaving Badly: Davido Allegedly Steals From and Beats up Taxi Driver Over “Girlfriend”

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This story has been gaining buzz for the past three to four days and continues to gain  momentum. I have ignored it because I do not believe it has much credibility. This does not rule out the possibility that the driver did in fact carry the named passengers to Davido’s home, or that an altercation occurred. Where I am having a hard time is the story of theft. What is the motive for Davido to steal from this driver, much less the amount of money alleged?

If you are just joining me, Davido is the son of a filthy rich Nigerian business man. While you may be quick to dismiss him as “a spoiled brat,” not so quick. He is a bit immature, as many nineteen year olds can be. However, when it comes to the business of music, he is very focused and very driven and logs in the long hours. His talent has helped him earn the respect of the industry and fans alike.

Now, can it be that Davido had nothing to do with this incident but those he hired as bodyguards, bouncers etc. did? That seems more plausible. The question would then turn on his liability with respect to the actions of his “employees” that he hired. Under Tort law, there are several claims that could come into play, although I doubt in this instance, particularly with the driver’s socio-economic status, that the Driver would sue Davido.

Nevertheless, I would focus very narrowly on a couple of claims. Under Tort law (Nigeria & US laws) there are legal claims such as Negligent Hiring and Negligent Supervision, among others, that can be filed against a person in Davido’s situation. Can be filed is different from what is actually filed after your attorney reviews the facts and legal claims that makes sense to go forward with.

For the legal theories above, if you know someone has a propensity to sexually harass women and you hire that person, you can be sued for negligent hiring when that person sexually assaults a woman while working for you as your employee. Similarly, if you hire someone and you fail to reasonably monitor the actions of your employee, you can be sued for negligent supervision. Obviously, this is just brushing lightly on this topic.

We saw D’Banj come close to dealing with the above legal claims when his bodyguard in London punched a female fan in the face. Lucky him, she did not sue. American Rapper 50Cent wasn’t so lucky. In September of 2011, he was sued when one of his employees allegedly “violently” attacked a guest at one of his parties.

I understand Davido’s camp has refused to return calls initiated by the press, although it appears they might be working on a press release. When I see the release, I might think about revisiting this case and it will be archived under ‘Celebrity Crimes’ if the release lends itself that way. For now, it serves more as an FYI. The obvious criminal law issues of assault/battery and theft are present. Please visit AML archived Assault & Battery cases of Olisa Adibua, K-SOLO and DJ Tee cases for my commentary which addresses  Nigerian law.

“A taxi driver, Femi Ajibola, will never forget July 1, 2012 in a hurry. At about 5.30 pm on that day, he received a phone call from a young woman in the Lekki area of Lagos and had quickly answered the subsequent invitation to pick her up.

“The lady introduced her as Susie. She called me to come and pick her and her friend. They told me to come pick them up at Mobolaji Estate near Lekki Second Roundabout. Later, I took them to a hotel at Lekki Phase I to meet one of their friends.

“From there we left for Beni Apartment in Victoria Island. They said that I should wait for them and promised to be back soon. Not long afterwards, one of the girls began to scream as she was coming towards my car. Behind her, I saw David Adeleke (Davido) and four of his bouncers.

“The girl was running towards me. I think they men had assaulted her. She said I should open the door for her so that she would enter. I opened the door for her; as she was about to enter the car, Davido caught up with her and slapped her face,” Ajibola said.

In a bid to save the girl from further assault, Ajibola switched on the engine of his cab and was about to drive off when the youthful singer suddenly dealt him a slap.

The cabbie said, “He left the girl and faced me. He said I was the one that brought the girls, that I am their boyfriend. He knocked my face against the steering wheel of the cab. This made blood begin to come out from my ear drums. He seized my car keys and in the process, injured me.

“Before I knew what was going on, his four bouncers began to beat me up. They beat me severely and took my car keys from me and chased me away. This happened around 11 pm. I went to report the matter at the Bar Beach Police Station, which was the nearest one. I was asked to come back the next morning to report the case. .  .” –The Punch has the full story.

Photocredit: D. Roberts Photography

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Africa Music Law™

AFRICA MUSIC LAW™ (AML) is a pioneering music business and entertainment law blog and podcast show by Fashion and Entertainment Lawyer Ms. Uduak Oduok empowering the African artist and Africa's rapidly evolving entertainment industry through brilliant music business and entertainment law commentary and analysis, industry news, and exclusive interviews.

Credited for several firsts in the fashion and entertainment industry, Ms. Uduak is also a Partner and Co-Founder of Ebitu Law Group, P.C. where she handles her law firm’s intellectual property law, media, business, fashion, and entertainment law practice areas. She has litigated a wide variety of cases in California courts and handled a variety of entertainment deals for clients in the USA, Africa, and Asia.

Her work and contributions to the creative industry have been recognized by numerous organizations including the National Bar Association, The American University School of Law and featured in prestigious legal publications in the USA including ABA Journal and The California Lawyer Magazine. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the prestigious Academy of Arts University in San Francisco.
For legal representation inquiries, please email (uduak@ebitulawgrp.com). For blog related inquiries i.e. advertising, licensing, or guest interview requests, please email (africamusiclaw@gmail.com). Thank you for visiting Africa Music Law™.

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