Marilyn Manson's ongoing legal battle over royalties with former keyboard player Stephen Bier, aka Madonna Wayne Gacy, is due to come to trial on 2 Feb. Manson is reportedly calling some celebrity witnesses, including his former label boss and Nine Inch Nails frontman Trent Reznor and his ex-wife Dita Von Teese, to bolster his case.
Bier claims that Manson told him that the band was not making much money, cutting off his salary, credit card access and refusing to pay his medical bills for work-related problems, before embarking on a two year spending spree between 2004 and 2006, buying items including a $2 million house, coat hangers used by Adolf Hitler and his wife Eva Braun's handbag, African masks made of human skin, the full skeleton of a four-year-old Chinese girl, the full skeleton of a 17th Century male in a wheelchair, a $450,000 engagement ring for Von Teese, drugs and drug treatment. It's also claimed Manson used money from the band's coffers to fund the production of his upcoming film, 'Phantasmagoria: The Visions Of Lewis Carroll'.
Manson, who fired Bier from the band in 2007, countersued in December 2007, saying that Bier had breached his contract by not participating fully in recording, performing live or selling band merchandise. Manson also claims that the partnership between the original band members, of which Biers is one, was dissolved in 1996. But Biers maintains that he is entitled to a share of the group's revenues and is seeking over $20 million in damages.