*NEWS*PR Firm KCD May Have Been Involved in Marc Jacobs Bribery Mess

  1. PR Firm KCD May Have Been Involved in Marc Jacobs Bribery Mess

    [​IMG]Photo: WireImage

    New details have emerged after last night's announcement by the state attorney general, Andrew Cuomo, that Marc Jacobs International may have paid up to $30,000 in bribes to a superintendent of the Lexington Avenue Armory, where the designer's fashion show has taken place over the past few years. It turns out that Jacobs, whose show takes place at the location on Friday, is the subject of an ongoing criminal investigation as well. "It's illegal to receive a bribe, but it can also be illegal to pay a bribe," Cuomo told the Post. And Marc isn't the only New York icon who might be dragged into this mess. KCD, the fashion-PR powerhouse that handles the booking and design of his (and many other) shows, is also under scrutiny by the AG's office. Apparently, Jacobs had allegedly been paying James Jackson, the Armory administrator, for nearly a decade, through KCD as an intermediary. Oh, no! The smear of this scandal is spreading across the fashion scene. Will Julie Mannion, the KCD design guru who has created Marc's shows, be involved? What about Bonnie Morrison, the jocular face of the firm these days? KCD hasn't been charged with anything, but these are socialites; we need them to stay unsullied. Think about the party pictures, people! The party pictures.
  2. whoa! didn't know about this! this is truly shocking :wtf:
  3. i read about this yesterday on nymag.com. whatever the outcome may be, it better not affect the bags!
  4. Yeah! - What about the Bonnie Bag? - Ha Ha
    Bonnie bag.jpg

  5. I agree! ...But I wouldnt mind if the negative press affected his sales so they had to mark the prices down :idea:
  6. ^^^ We can dream!!
  7. WOW! That's the Armory that's on 22nd street right? That's right across the street from my old college at Baruch.
  8. There is always something going on in big business! I still love him!!
  9. Obviously, for many years this was a win win situation for both parties. Unfortunately, they neglected to remember how much they had to lose.
  10. Does anyone really believe that MJ is the ONLY designer who was involved w/something like this??

    And Marc isn't the only New York icon who might be dragged into this mess. KCD, the fashion-PR powerhouse that handles the booking and design of his (and many other) shows, is also under scrutiny by the AG's office.

    He's probably the BIGGEST name involved and the best to grab attention - I"m sure this type of thing has been going on for years. I'd be interested in knowing who else may be involved and how it's going to affect all parties.
  11. Whoa... bribery for what?
  12. State Aide at Fashion Show Site Is Accused of Shaking Down a Designer

    Damon Winter/The New York Times
    Crowds leaving a Marc Jacobs show at the 26th Street Armory in September. The state says a bureaucrat solicited more than $40,000 in bribes from Mr. Jacobs’s organization and others.

    Published: February 7, 2008
    It has become the most anticipated show of the high-stakes merry-go-round that is Fashion Week: Marc Jacobs at the 26th Street Armory. This week, Mr. Jacobs’s show, known as much for its celebrity-filled front rows and long delays as its provocative collection, will act as a capstone to the season when the world’s fickle arbiters of style descend on New York to say yea or nay, determining the fortunes of multibillion-dollar businesses.

    And now, according to charges filed Wednesday by the New York attorney general, Andrew M. Cuomo, it appears that Mr. Jacobs’s company, along with others interested in holding events in the coveted space, had to pay off a longtime state government bureaucrat who controlled access to the building.

    Since 2000, James Jackson, who served as the superintendent of the armory for more than eight years, solicited more than $40,000 in bribes from the company that produced Mr. Jacobs’s shows and the others, officials said. Mr. Jackson is accused of demanding money and gifts, including computers and a Bowflex exercise machine, to hold certain dates for events, to ease the paperwork and in some cases to allow early access to the building, which typically rents for $6,000 a day.

    “If anyone believes that they have to pay off or offer a gratuity to access state space, let us know,” Mr. Cuomo said in announcing the charges at his offices in Lower Manhattan, as the models of Fashion Week were striding down the catwalks in Bryant Park and the stylish set was looking forward to Mr. Jacobs’s armory show on Friday night.

    “It’s not a way of doing business, it’s not O.K., it’s not that everybody does it. It’s a crime,” he added. Mr. Jackson, 56, of Queens, a 30-year employee of the Division of Military and Naval Affairs who earned $58,951 as superintendent of the 26th Street Armory until shortly after his arrest in October, pleaded not guilty at his arraignment Wednesday, officials said. He faces more than 20 years in prison if convicted. He declined to comment through his lawyer, Alan Abramson.

    Mr. Cuomo, whose office was brought into the case by the inspector general’s office, said the investigation was continuing and did not rule out bringing charges against Mr. Jacobs’s company or the show’s producer, KCD. The inspector general’s office is also looking into activities at the seven other armories in the city.

    The century-old 26th Street building, also known as the 69th Regiment Armory, has been especially sought by designers because it is one of the few spaces in the city that can hold thousands of people with unobstructed views.

    Mr. Jacobs has been criticized by other designers because he has an exclusive deal with the armory that keeps them from showing there during Fashion Week. With two shows, one for the main Marc Jacobs line and one for the secondary Marc by Marc Jacobs, he has become known for elaborate productions that can approach the level of performance art, involving confetti streaming from overhead or a marching band stomping down the runway.

    The shows are also highly commercial, offering designers the opportunity to impress the critics and editors who can promote their fashions, the celebrities who become walking advertisements for the designs, and the retail executives who will place them in stores. They are productions that can involve hundreds of workers and cost millions of dollars.

    “You’re building basically a Broadway level kind of set, and you’re doing it just for one performance only,” said Kevin Krier, who produced shows for Tom Ford at Gucci and is planning the Sean John show at Cipriani on East 42nd Street just before Mr. Jacobs’s on Friday. “But it has to have all the lighting that can accommodate what your aesthetic needs are in terms of the conceit of the designer and what the show is,” as well as accommodate photographers and videographers, models and those buffing them head to toenail, and thousands of guests as if they were at a wedding.

    Representatives of Mr. Jacobs’s company and KCD said they were cooperating with the investigation but declined to elaborate in detail.
    An undercover investigation led to the bribery and extortion charges filed against Mr. Jackson on Wednesday in State Supreme Court in Manhattan.
    Roughly a year ago, officials said, the office of the New York inspector general, Kristine Hamann, received complaints about Mr. Jackson from the New York International Carpet Show, which was seeking to hold its annual event at the armory, the state-owned building used for military operations and to raise money.

    In many cases, the indictment charges, Mr. Jackson not only demanded money for his help in reserving the space but also for keeping designers’ plans from being pre-empted by the needs of the National Guard. With the carpet show, Mr. Jackson was seeking $1,500 to allow the group to begin setting up a day early without paying the daily rental fee. Investigators set up a sting operation and recorded the transaction with a hidden camera. Shortly thereafter, Mr. Jackson resigned his post and was arrested.
    In what Ms. Hamann called “a pattern of payoffs to Jackson that covered nearly a decade,” he also allegedly solicited bribes from the planners of the Pulse contemporary art fair last year.

    But the bulk of the indictment, 24 of 31 counts, relates to Marc Jacobs International and its use of the armory. Marc Jacobs International released a statement saying that the show would go on. “We are using the armory for this week’s fashion shows with the full knowledge and consent of the attorney general’s office.”

    Eric Wilson contributed reporting.
  13. Is this going to stop you from loving him? Or do you realize this kind of poop goes on all the time in big business!!Those bribes he paid were pocket change to him, and I am sure he did it just to avoid the hassle!!The show must go on!!!