Katy Perry’s business manager testified Tuesday that she has paid more than $2.6 million in attorneys’ fees in a court battle with a Silver Lake businesswoman who allegedly recorded a grant deed without the archbishop’s approval on a former convent in Los Feliz in 2015 that the singer sought to buy.
CPA Bernard Gudvi told a Los Angeles Superior Court jury that Perry, through her company, The Bird Nest LLC, is seeking complete reimbursement of those costs from Dana Hollister.
“It’s been ridiculously expensive,” said Gudvi, who has managed Perry for 10 years and previously filled the same role for 35 years for the late rocker Tom Petty.
Asked by Perry’s attorney, Eric Rowen, what he hopes the trial will accomplish, Gudvi said, “To get rid of this grant deed and let Ms. Perry buy the house she wants to buy.”
Gudvi said his tasks for the 33-year-old singer include handling her finances, paying her bills and tracking her income.
The Archdiocese of Los Angeles filed suit against Hollister shortly after she recorded the grant deed, alleging that the businesswoman knew she needed the written authority of the archbishop to buy the property as well as approval from the Vatican. The archdiocese and Perry maintain Hollister’s actions forced them to come to court and fight for two years to get the Hollister transaction undone.
Hollister made the purchase through Sisters Rita Callanan and Catherine Rose Holzman, two of five nuns of the California Institute of the Sisters of the Most Holy and Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin. Hollister said she believed the sisters when she said they had the authority to sell the property to her. Judge Stephanie Bowick later canceled the deal.
Holzman and Callanan are the only members who are against the sale of their former home to Perry and are scheduled to testify Wednesday. The institute and the archdiocese are plaintiffs in the lawsuit.
The property has been vacant since 2011 because it became too costly for the retired sisters to maintain and no longer accommodated their physical needs, and the proceeds from any sale of the property would go to the institute, according to the archdiocese.
Perry’s $14.5 million deal includes $10 million in cash, plus another $4.5 million to provide an alternative property for a house of prayer for priests that still has a lease on the Waverly Drive property, according to the archdiocese. In contrast, Hollister paid $44,000 and agreed to a contingent promissory note, archdiocese attorney J. Michael Hennigan has said.
–City News Service