Entertainment & Sports Law
Lawyer Contends ‘Jersey Shore’ Is a Criminal Enterprise
By Debra Cassens Weiss
Sep 1, 2010, 11:40 am CDT
New Jersey lawyer Eugene Lavergne has filed three separate lawsuits that contend the MTV show Jersey Shore has the characteristics of a criminal enterprise.
Lavergne is becoming the go-to lawyer for those wanting to sue the show, the Hollywood Reporter says. One of Lavergne’s clients, Stephen Izzo Jr., claims he was punched and knocked unconscious by a cast member, the Daily Record reported in an earlier story. Another, identified only as J.P., alleges she was assaulted by the show’s security staff after she argued with Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi.
Lavergne told the Hollywood Reporter that MTV parent Viacom is reaping millions of dollars of profits from criminal activities that are filmed for broadcast. As an example, he points to the fight involving J.P.
“The stuff they don’t show is even worse than what’s airing,” Lavergne says. “Take the fight with J.P. The whole unedited footage goes on for eight minutes! They are spurring this on. Instead of stopping it, they encourage it. There’s no plausible deniability about their knowledge in the crimes and that’s why I think it’s certainly like the [famed ex-crime boss Vito] Genovese situation.”