Destiny's Child Ex-Members Sue Group Over 'Survivor' Jabs

Sony Music also named for breach of contract, defamation, libel, fraud.

The current Survivors in Destiny's Child aren't the only ones who won't give up, as two former members filed a second lawsuit against the pop group Wednesday.

LeToya Luckett and LaTavia Roberson, members on 1998's self-titled debut and 1999's The Writing's on the Wall, filed a federal lawsuit in Houston that claims, in part, that the song "Survivor" makes unflattering comments toward them, according to their lawyer Warren M. Fitzgerald. Such comments would violate an agreement reached in December 2000 regarding their first suit, which prohibits each party from making such remarks against the other.

The alleged slight comes from the line, "You thought I wouldn't sell without you/ Sold 9 million." Lyrics of other songs are also being examined, but "Survivor" was the only track named in the complaint, Fitzgerald said.

The suit further alleges that, in an interview with E! Entertainment Television that aired Tuesday, Beyoncé Knowles called the ex-members' previous lawsuit a "bunch of bull," which again violates the agreement for making an improper reference to the original complaint.

Luckett and Roberson are seeking a restraining order and injunction to prevent further comments that would violate the agreement. Sony Music, the parent company of Destiny's Child's label, Columbia Records, is also named in the complaint for breach of contract, defamation, libel and fraud.

In May 2001, Luckett and Roberson were sued by Knowles and current member Kelly Rowland, after the estate of Destiny's Child's co-manager, Ann Tillman, sued the group and their current manager, Mathew Knowles, for unpaid management commissions. The filing of this suit also breached the original agreement, Fitzgerald said, which relinquished all involvement of Luckett and Roberson with the group. Ann Tillman, who helped manage the group from the beginning, died in 1997, a year before Destiny's Child's debut album was released.

Columbia Records had no comment on the lawsuit. Neither Mathew Knowles nor his spokespeople returned calls by press time.

Tom Fulkerson, a lawyer for Destiny's Child, was quoted in Thursday's Houston Chronicle as saying he thought the lawsuit was "ridiculous."

"It's unfortunate that the plaintiffs have nothing better to do with their time than to dream up new lawsuits to file," he told the paper. "We made a settlement agreement that we knew put things to bed, yet here we are again."

The first lawsuit, filed in March 2000 against both the group and Mathew Knowles, claimed wrongful expulsion. While the complaint against Destiny's Child was settled, one against Mathew Knowles claiming he was involved in the decision to have Luckett and Roberson dismissed and citing a breach of his fiduciary duties — which require that, as manager, he was obligated to act honestly and in good faith regarding all group decisions — is still pending.

For a feature detailing the drama surrounding the first Destiny's Child split, check out "Destiny's Child: Then And Now."