The Black Eyed Peas manager who was accused of punching celebrity blogger Perez Hilton has avoided assault charges, after apologising about the incident as part of an agreement.
Will.i.am confronted Hilton at the MuchMusic Awards in Canada in June (09) and took the Internet gossip to task over his online attacks on bandmate Fergie and the group's latest album The E.N.D.
Manager Liborio Molina waded into the argument, allegedly punching the blogger in the back of the head.
Molina surrendered to police in Toronto in the days following the violent encounter, and Hilton subsequently filed documents suing him for battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress. He agreed to drop the assault charge in exchange for an apology.
Following a hearing on Wednesday (18Nov09), Molina's lawyer Mark Sandler read the written apology outside court: "I apologise 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."
As part of the deal, Molina has also agreed not to contact Hilton, except through his lawyer, not to carry any weapons for 12 months and donate $500 Canadian (US$476/GBP298) to a family shelter.
Hilton has also filed a civil suit against Molina seeking more than $25,000 (GBP15,625) in damages. That case is still pending.