Celebrity-backed vodka caught in lawsuit

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A celebrity-backed vodka company is suffering a massive hangover as it is embroiled in a vicious $15 million court battle. Investor Joseph Lehey has filed a complaint alleging that he poured $7.5 million into the Madea Vodka brand but that its creators squandered money on their own salaries, instead of developing the swanky brand. Meanwhile, the defendants – scientist Dr Tim Goldburt and co-founders Matt Sandy and David Perillo – allege in court documents that Lehey is “a desperate, irrational and potentially violent individual, who has engaged in threats of physical violence” against them. The luxury liquor has become popular in elite circles for its hi-tech bottle, which displays glowing personalised messages of up to 240 characters. It flaunts celebs like Jon Bon Jovi, Fran Drescher and Meryl Streep on its website and boasts “Wi-Fi-capable, electronically-powered illuminated display”.

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