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Pitbull entitled to cancel Oz tour: judge
Pitbull. Picture: Dainty Group

US rapper Pitbull was entitled to cancel an Australian tour nearly four years ago after he was not paid on time, a NSW Supreme Court judge has ruled.

Australian music promoters Jaime Fernandez, known as DJ Suave, and Juan Uribe, known as DJ Don Juan, had sued Pitbull for breach of contract after he cancelled concerts in Melbourne, Sydney and Perth in December 2008.

The Supreme Court heard Pitbull, whose real name is Armando Perez, entered into an agreement with the pair that he would be paid $60,000 for the concerts.

This included a $30,000 deposit, with the balance to be paid on November 25, seven days before Pitbull left the US for Australia.

The court heard Pitbull did not receive the full deposit amount and he did not leave the US on the scheduled date after his promoter, Barry London, told him the final payment had not been made.

Pitbull eventually received a payment of $US50,975 on December 3, 2008, when he maintained it was too late for him to board a flight.

He kept the $30,000 deposit but returned the remaining money "as an act of goodwill", the court was told.

Mr Fernandez and Mr Uribe sought damages relating to their losses arising from the concert cancellations, ticket sales and venue hire as well as the return of their deposit.

However, Justice Robert Beech-Jones noted Mr London was "dealing with an overseas promoter with whom he did not have any established relationship".

"Once Pitbull embarked on his flight to Australia his exposure increased and his ability to pull out became difficult," Justice Beech-Jones said on Wednesday.

"It is common ground that on 1 December 2008, Mr London had said they would not leave unless they were paid.

"The departure date of 2 December 2008 was pivotal to Pitbull completing this tour.

"Once it came unstuck, Pitbull's opportunity to undertake that tour was over."

The issue of costs will be dealt with at a later date.