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Posted May 2, 2012 | 6 Comments
Tareq Salahi revives lawsuit, drops estranged wife as defendant
By Joe Beck -- firstname.lastname@example.org
Tareq Salahi has decided to revive his $50 million lawsuit in Warren County Circuit Court, but this time he is dropping his estranged wife Michaele as a defendant and focusing on rock guitarist Neal Schon and two entertainment companies affiliated with Schon and his band, Journey.
The suit, in the form of an amended complaint filed Monday, targets Schon, of the rock band Journey, and two California-based companies, DD Entertainment LLC and Nomota, Inc., in what Salahi describes as a plot by the three defendants to breathe new life into Journey's faded popularity at his expense.
Michaele Salahi was a defendant in Tareq Salahi's original lawsuit, which Circuit Judge Dennis L. Hupp ruled in early April lacked sufficient legal basis to continue. Hupp gave Tareq Salahi a chance to file an amended suit by Monday if he wanted to continue the suit.
The new version, filed by attorneys Charles B. Roberts of Occoquan and Georgia Rossiter of Winchester, says Tareq Salahi lost his wife and business partner Michaele Salahi to Schon. In doing so, the suit claims, Schon and Nomota, Inc. deprived Tareq Salahi "of lawful employment in the entertainment field by embarrassing and humiliating him, and also by doing so ... Schon guaranteed that his immoral, improper, illegal procurement of Michaele Salahi, valuable entertainment commodity who was now working for him, would not return to her former contractual relationship with the plaintiff."
The amended complaint depicts Salahi as a broken man "wrought with anger and a sense of helplessness" as he learned the details of Michaele Salahi's affair with Schon late last year.
The suit describes Salahi's life as "fundamentally changed" by Michaele Salahi's decision to leave their home at 4410 Scenic Overlook Drive in Front Royal and join Schon on a tour with Journey.
Tareq Salahi has insisted he was worried that she was kidnapped or harmed in some other way. As a result, local and federal law enforcement agencies were called in to investigate. The suit says an FBI agent told him on Sept. 14 that Michaele Salahi was "now touring with defendant Schon and his band Journey and apparently became part of his entertainment business."
The amended suit accuses Schon of sending a sexually explicit email photo of one of his body parts to Tareq Salahi after Michaele Salahi left him.
The suit contains a long list of symptoms of physical and emotional distress Tareq Salahi says he suffered as a result of the break up of his marriage and business with Michaele Salahi. They included sleeplessness and frequent nightmares and a loss of 40 pounds that he blames on a failure to eat "most of the time."
The suit also depicts the Salahis' marriage as a business venture in which husband and wife used their notoriety to obtain a book and movie deal, and bookings on TV talk shows and reality programs. Their now-defunct winery is also listed as one of their joint business ventures.