“Hotel California” Lyrics Case Abruptly Dismissed, Judge Says Don Henley “Manipulated” Prosecutors

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“Hotel California” Lyrics Case Abruptly Dismissed, Judge Says Don Henley “Manipulated” Prosecutors


The legal trial involving allegedly stolen handwritten lyrics to “Hotel California” has been abruptly dismissed. As the Associated Press reports, prosecutors dropped the charges against the three men who had been accused of conspiring to possess and sell lyrics to that and other Eagles songs.

Apparently, after Don Henley took the stand last month, he waived attorney-client privilege, which resulted in more than 6,000 pages of material being produced that the defense had no opportunity to look over before examining the witnesses in the case. Defense lawyers said that the newly obtained emails “raised questions about the trial’s fairness.”

Judge Curtis Farber agreed with that sentiment. According to Billboard, in open court Faber said Henley and longtime Eagles manager Irving Azoff “manipulated” prosecutors into bringing the case forward. “It is now clear that both witnesses and their lawyers … used the privilege to obfuscate and hide information that they believed would be damaging to their position that the lyric sheets were stolen,” Faber said.

More from Faber: “Albeit late, I commend the prosecution for refusing to allow itself or the courts to be further manipulated for the benefit of anyone’s personal gain. District Attorney Bragg and the prosecutorial team here, while eating a slice of humble pie, are displaying the highest level of integrity in moving to dismiss the charges. I am impressed.”

The defendants — Glenn Horowitz, Craig Inciardi and Edward Kosinski — had pleaded not guilty to the charges, claiming that they had no knowledge that the handwritten lyrics they were planning on selling had been purportedly taken from Henley by a journalist writing a book about the band and never returned. Their lawyers told reporters that they maintained their innocence in light of the case being dropped. A lawyer representing Henley told the Associated Press, “As the victim in this case, Mr. Henley has once again been victimized by this unjust outcome. He will pursue all his rights in the civil courts.”

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