According to Soompi, the Korean entertainment powerhouse annnounced yesterday (5th January) that they won an ongoing lawsuit against their previous artiste, Tao.
Tao unofficially left the group in May as he was reported to have flown to United States to study and to receive treatment for his injuries. In June 2015, he returned to China and set up a personal studio for his future solo activities. He also made his solo debut with his first mini album titled “T.A.O”.
In August 2015, Tao pressed legal charges against SM Entertainment to end his exclusive contract with them and quit EXO. This is similar to the company’s previous cases with Wu Yi Fan (formerly known as Kris) and Luhan, who left EXO-M in February and July 2014 respectively to pursue their own individual activities in China.
The company struck back by filing lawsuits against all 3 of them to prevent them from carrying out their entertainment activities in China.
“SM has ongoing lawsuits against EXO members Wu Yifan (Kris), Luhan, and Tao for violating their exclusive contracts and partaking in illegal promotions in China. Among these lawsuits, SM filed a lawsuit against Tao for failing to repay SM on 13th October 2015,” the company said in an official statement.
An intermediate court in Qingdao, China made the verdict that Tao is to repay SM Entertainment as well as interest for the delayed payment.
SM further revealed in a statement that Tao asked the company for temporary payments after he left EXO without notice last April. However, he failed to refund the temporary payments before the deadline.
The company explained:
SM provided the temporary payments in order to faithfully fulfill our role as his agency. However, despite clearly knowing the bank account number, he failed to pay back the temporary payments within the promised time. Then he went against common sense and filed a lawsuit to nullify his contract.
“SM will not dwell on this ruling and will pursue legal action against all actions that are unlawful and violate SM and EXO’s rights and interests. We will represent the good intentions of victims and work to prevent damage toward Korea and China’s cultural exchanges that was caused because of Kris, Luhan, and Tao’s illegal actions and breaches of contract,” the company added.
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