Viacom CEO lawyers prompt speedy trial, mentioning Redstone'' s health

Viacom’s President Philippe Dauman, who is suing over his elimination from Sumner Redstone’s trust, on Monday said in a court filing that a judge need to expedite the matter because the 93-year-old media magnate is in disease and might quickly not be able to offer necessary proof. Saying “time is of the essence,” the filing in Massachusetts state court explains Redstone as unable to “speak, stand, walk, consume, compose or check out.” A representative for Redstone did not have an immediate remark. Last month, Redstone got rid of Dauman and Viacom board member George Abrams from the trust that would identify the future of CBS Corp (CBS.N) and Viacom after managing investor Redstone, 93, dies or is proclaimed mentally incapacitated. The pair were likewise gotten rid of from the board of Redstone’s National Amusements Inc, a personal cinema company that holds 80 percent of Viacom’s and CBS’s ballot stock. The outcome of the Massachusetts case and a comparable one in California, and who ends up managing the trust and the National Amusements board, will have varied ramifications for Viacom and CBS and might result in changes at the top of both business, potentially through mergers and acquisitions.

A judge is expected to hear arguments on Dauman’s demand to speed up discovery and a trial on Tuesday. The executive and Abrams took legal action against in Might, stating their elimination from Redstone’s trust amounted to an unlawful corporate takeover by Redstone’s daughter Shari Redstone. Dauman and Abrams’ suit questions Redstone’s mental competence and argue that Redstone is being manipulated by his child.

Shari Redstone’s lawyers have asked the court to decline Viacom’s request to move up the trial, saying in court filings the executives were only motivated by self-interest. They have likewise countered in court filings with statement from a physician who analyzed the elderly Redstone and discovered the billionaire had the mental capacity had to take Dauman and Abrams off his trust. Monday’s filing likewise defends Dauman’s previous statements from a November affidavit in another lawsuit of Redstone’s competency explaining Sumner Redstone as “engaged” and “attentive.”.

The filing keeps in mind those qualities “might be credited to an individual who lacks the relevant capability and who is simply unable to fully process information provided to him no matter how engaged or mindful he is.” It also says that it its likely Redstone’s health has declined considering that November. Dauman is requesting for a trial by the end of September. (Reporting by Anna Motorist and Jessica Toonkel; Editing by Nick Zieminski).

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