NOVEMBER 19, 2009 National Post
 

Perez Hilton claims victory (and plugs new book) after Black Eyed Peas' manager apologizes

By Steph Davidson
 

Offering a weak apology and a $500 charity donation, the manager of the Black Eyed Peas has been spared a Toronto criminal trial for allegedly assaulting celebrity blogger Perez Hilton.

Liborio Molina, 36, yesterday agreed to a peace bond in exchange for the assault charge being dropped, with 'no admission of criminal act.' Mr. Molina (pictured above outside court) had been accused of hitting Mr. Hilton at Cobra nightclub on King Street West, during an after party for the MuchMusic Video Awards in June.

The peace bond included a letter of apology to Mr. Hilton, whose real name is Mario Lavandeira.

Mark Sandler, Mr. Molina's lawyer, read the letter outside Old City Hall courthouse: 'I apologize for what I did on June 22 of 2009, even though you engaged in highly offensive comments, including a homophobic slur to my clients; I acknowledge that these kinds of issues should not be resolved through a physical response.''

In his own statement to the National Post yesterday, Mr. Hilton took the opportunity to plug his forthcoming book: 'I am happy that Liborio Molina has accepted responsibility for his violent actions. I look forward to reading his letter of apology and he and will.i.am can look forward to reading my in-depth thoughts about that awful night in my new book, Perez Hilton's True Bloggywood Stories: The Glamorous Life of Beating, Cheating and Overdosing, out on December 1st.'

Under the conditions of the peace bond, Mr. Molina is to have no contact with Mr. Hilton, to stay at least 100 metres from Cobra nightclub and to possess no weapons for a year.

Mr. Molina also donated $500 to Leslieville's Red Door Family Shelter. His lawyer said he is 'delighted the matter was resolved.'

After the hearing, Mr. Molina told reporters: 'Yes, I do regret the whole night.''

The incident began between as an argument between Mr. Hilton and the Black Eyed Peas' will.i.am in the club. Mr. Hilton originally accused will.i.am, whose real name is William Adams, and his security of hitting him in the eye when he called for help from his hotel room via his Twitter feed.

The two subsequently became engaged in an online Twitter/video war. In his video response to will.i.am, Mr. Hilton said Liborio 'Polo' Molina had hit him.

'We leave the club and as soon as we leave, there's will.i.am again outside of the club. He followed us outside. Then his manager, Polo, whom I have met before, from behind comes up to me, clocks me in the eye, right here, and punches me two or three times. I am in shock. I did not know what to do. I touch my eye and it was bleeding. I see my fingertips and I'm bleeding. I think my eye might be falling out of my head,' Mr. Hilton said in the video posted on his website.

Mr. Hilton is also suing Mr. Molina for more than US$25,000 for alleged battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Bryan Freedman, Mr. Hilton's lawyer, said yesterday: 'We are pleased that, as part of yet another criminal case against him, Mr. Molina has admitted to and apologized for his violent actions. That admission assures his liability in the civil matter pending in Los Angeles. Hopefully he now understands that violence is never an acceptable response to freedom of speech.'

The accusations have not been proven in court.