Tommy Lee Settles Photographer Suit, Video Moves To Federal Court

Tommy Lee has settled with Henry Trappler, the photographer he's accused of assaulting outside the Viper Club in Los Angeles in September 1996, but the Mötley Crüe drummer was thwarted for a second time as he tried to apologize to the man. The terms of the settlement were not disclosed. The case had been scheduled to go in front of the judge this coming Monday, but they came to an agreement at a pre-trial hearing on Thursday.

Reuters reports that Lee, Trappler and their respective attorneys worked out the settlement in a room at the courthouse, and as the two parties left the room, Lee extended his hand to Trappler but Trappler's attorney, Gloria Allred, intervened. The news service says she jumped between the two men saying, "Nobody touches my client!" Lee reportedly cursed the lawyer and "stormed off."

It was similar to the scene late last month when Lee paid a court-ordered $17,500 restitution to Trappler. Lee had attempted to shake hands with Trappler

at that time but Allred also blocked that move.

This was Lee's second appearance at the courthouse this week -- he pleaded no contest to a charge of spousal assault on Tuesday. He's currently free on bail until a sentencing hearing in May but is expected to serve at least six months. Lee will be on three years' probation during which time he must stay away from alcohol and drugs and submit to random testing. He was also ordered to pay his estranged wife's legal costs and attend anger management sessions once a week. He is allowed one supervised visit a week with his children.

A message from Lee posted on a fan bulletin board late Tuesday said: "I'm overjoyed that I'm going to see my children, and my attorney has asked me not to comment any further."

Other messages from Nikki Sixx indicate the band's live appearances -- they had at least one radio station-sponsored festival tentatively scheduled for the summer -- are all on hold, logically pending the outcome of

Lee's sentencing hearing. Sixx says the band will concentrate on writing and recording and hints that solo projects are also a possibility.

In related news, UPI reports that Lee's soon-to-be-ex wife Pamela Anderson has successfully moved her claim against IEG into federal court, which has sole jurisdiction over copyright infringement claims. IEG is the company marketing the Anderson/Lee X-rated video, "Pam and Tommy Lee: Hardcore & Uncensored." IEG say they have an agreement with the couple and will file a countersuit. Anderson has been denying their claim.

UPI says Anderson told reporters: "We never gave them the right to sell the video or distribute the video anywhere in the world. So we're going after everything because it's unbelievable." Her attorney said that they are not trying to stop the sale of the video, they just want their fair share of the profits.