The legal battle between Journey founder/guitarist Neal Schon and guitarist/keyboardist Jonathan Cain has escalated, with Cain issuing a statement in response to the lawsuit filed last month by Schon.
Schon's lawsuit demands that he be given full access to the band's business accounts, operated by Nomota LLC, claiming, "Cain is interfering with Journey, refusing to respond to booking opportunities, blocking payment to band members, crew, and vendors, refusing to execute necessary operating documents, and in other ways as well."
Now Cain has responded, and he doesn't pull his punches.
"This is a matter that should have been resolved privately," says Cain, "but I am forced to publicly respond now to Neal’s malicious lies and personal attacks on my family and I in an effort to garner public support for his ill-conceived lawsuit – a lawsuit that has absolutely no merit.
"Neal has always had access to the credit card statements; what he lacks – and what he is really seeking – is the ability to increase his spending limits. Since Neal decided to publicise what is going on, I can tell you we will present the evidence to the court that shows that Neal has been under tremendous financial pressure as a result of his excessive spending and extravagant lifestyle, which led to him running up enormous personal charges on the band’s credit card account.
"When efforts were made to limit his use of the card to legitimate band expenses, Neal unfortunately decided to attack me rather than trying to get his reckless spending under control. I am saddened by the situation – for Neal and for our fans – but since Neal filed a lawsuit, I suspect he will not be able to ignore the court like he has ignored the countless financial advisors and accountants he has fired over the past several years who have tried in vain to help him."
Cain's statement is accompanied by another, from his lawyers, Alan S. Gutman and John Juenger from the Los Angeles firm of Gutman Law, which says, "The evidence will establish that Schon’s financial crisis has nothing to do with his professed 'unfettered access to Nomota’s records.' Our investigation has established that Schon’s personal financial problems resulted solely from his reckless spending, including what preliminarily appears to be charging more than $1 million of improper personal expenses on the band’s corporate Nomota AMEX card.
"Schon’s complaint is the classic example of desperate people doing desperate things. It’s very unfortunate that Neal – and Neal alone – has created such difficulties for himself and his family through his profligate spending."
Gutman Law have also filed a motion to disqualify (opens in new tab) with the County of Contra Costa in California, calling Schon's lawsuit "baseless and misguided" and demanding that Schon's legal representatives at Miller Barondess, LLP "must be disqualified based on its prior representation of Cain."
Miller Barondess represented Schon and Cain during their 2020 lawsuit against former members Steve Smith and Ross Valory.
Meanwhile, Schon has spoken about the situation in a post on social media (opens in new tab), saying "The only comment I’ll make at this time is it’s all very unfortunate and tried for over a year to attain all our corporate records for Nomota with many personal e-mails to Jon as well as many legal letter stating it’s my legal right to see all but I was left with no choice but to take it legal.
"There’s much more… since I filed I’ll be following my attorneys advice and not speak until we are in court where I’ll not have a problem at all. It is what it is."
Nomota LLC's LinkedIn page (opens in new tab) lists eight employees, including Cain and fellow Journey members Arnel Pineda and Deen Castronovo, alongside several members of the band's road crew.