Manson Sues Label, Former Bandmate

Suit seeks to halt sale of early recordings.

Marilyn Manson (real name: Brian Warner) and bandmate Madonna Wayne Gacy (Stephen Bier) have filed suit against a former band member and a Florida record label. The suit claims that a release of old Manson material constitutes trademark and copyright infringement.

Filed in federal court in L.A. on April 28, the suit seeks to halt the sale and distribution of "Lunch Boxes & Choklit Cows," an album of 1993 songs cut by Manson's early band the Spooky Kids.

The action, lodged against ex-band member Scott Putesky (aka Daisy Berkowitz) and Empirewerks Records, claims that the album and accompanying DVD make unauthorized use of illustrations from Manson's book "The Long Hard Road Out of Hell" and the musicians' likenesses.

It also alleges that the purported infringements constitute a breach of an October 1998 settlement agreement related to Putesky's exit from the band.

The action claims damages of at least $500,000 and seeks punitive damages to be determined.

Putesky/Empire attorney Richard Wolfe calls the suit "ill-conceived," and says the proper venue for the matter is Broward County (Fla.) Circuit Court, where matters pertaining to the settlement agreement were heard.

Wolfe says, "We've tried to work things out with Manson. He doesn't respond."