After expressing nothing but support for Keya Morgan as recently as last week, Stan Lee is now taking his embattled business manager to court with claims of elder abuse.
The 95-year old comic legend and Marvel movie cameo king today saw paperwork filed in LA Superior Court seeking an extension of a prior restraining order against Morgan. Submitted by Lee’s former lawyer Tom Lallas and without a signature from Lee or a declaration, this move, I’ve learned, came as the icon’s current legal reps were about to file their own R.O. request.
With the request granted temporarily, all parties anticipated being in court on July 6 for a further hearing on today’s 43-page filing. Among the various conditions of the R.O. is that Morgan must stay at least 100 yards away from Lee and his home. The paperwork also states that “Mr. Lee has a large estate worth over $50 million and therefore is vulnerable to financial predators.” Fired in February after several years working with Lee, Lallas says in the filing that he “along with law enforcement and Adult Protective Services, believes that Mr. Morgan is unduly influencing Mr. Lee and isolating him.”
This overlapping lawyer move comes just days after the Black Panther and Spider-Man co-creator’s financial guy was arrested by LAPD on suspicion of filing a false police report, allegedly concerning a supposed break-in incident at Lee’s residence. Out on $20,000 bail, Morgan is due in court on the matter early next month, Deadline has been told by investigating law enforcement sources. At the time of Morgan’s arrest, Lee and his family were granted a 48-hour RO against the business manager.
Quite the turn from June 10, when Lee posted a video online emphasizing that Morgan was his guy. “If you can’t get me, call Keya Morgan,” said the ex-Marvel editor-in-chief. “The two of us work together and are conquering the world side-by-side,” Lee added in an appearance that he now says was made under duress.
— stan lee (@TheRealStanLee) June 10, 2018
The duo were seen most publicly on April 24 on the red carpet for the LA premiere of Avengers: Infinity War, in which Lee has his usual Marvel movie appearance.
“Stan Lee and JC Lee are requiring that all of their personal, business and contractual relations be managed solely by their attorneys Kirk Edward Schenck and Jonathan Freund,” said a statement from the two lawyers now representing the younger Lee and the recently widowed older Lee, respectively, today after the R.O. had been filed by Lallas. “Neither Mr. Lee, who is 95 years old, nor his only child and sole heir JC Lee, will enter into any contracts or commitments of any kind unless pursuant to a written agreement approved by their legal counsel,” the statement added, asking Morgan to “leave them alone” after “this nightmare.”
“Stan Lee is in good health and great spirits after undergoing a very dangerous ordeal, the specific details of which are still being investigated,” Schenck and Freund noted. “Stan Lee is resting peacefully back in his home of over 30 years after having been moved to an undisclosed location late Friday night / Saturday morning by Keya Morgan.”
“Stan Lee is excited to get back to “business as usual” once he recovers from his recent ordeal, during which he felt compelled to take actions and make statements out of fear for his and his family’s personal safety. Stan and his family ask his fans and well-wishers to respect his privacy as the LAPD and the Los Angeles District Attorney office work with over 30 eye witnesses to discover the details of his recent interactions with Keya Morgan.”
“The situation between Stan and Keya Morgan was a classic case of Stockholm Syndrome,” one insider said, adding to a scenario that has nothing comic about it.
The LA County D.A. told Deadline that “no case has been presented to our office.” Keya Morgan did not respond to request for comment on the matter and the allegations.