CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A Nueces County district judge will recuse himself from a lawsuit involving the rights to a TV show based on Chris Perez and Selena Quintanilla's love story.
Selena's father, Abraham Quintanilla, is suing Perez and a production company for violating an agreement signed more than two decades ago about the Tejano superstar's estate.
Attorneys involved in the case appeared in court Monday for a scheduling hearing to see where they stand in the case, but District Judge Carlos Valdez offered defense attorneys a chance to recuse him from the case.
Valdez said he was the district attorney during the time of Selena's death and was the prosecutor that put her killer, Yolanda Saldivar, behind bars. He said during the whole process he became very close to both Perez and the Quintanilla family.
"If they want to file a motion to recuse or they think some reason I need to get off of the case, let me know," Valdez said. "I feel like I can be fair and impartial to both sides or to all the sides, but if somebody has qualms, please let me know."
Valdez said he would not have any hard feelings if he was asked to step down from the case.
The attorney representing Endemol Latino, the company producing the unauthorized show, said he would be filing that motion for recusal in the next couple of days.
The case stems from a book that Chris perez wrote titles "To Selena With Love." Abraham Quintanilla said the book is a breach of contract and that Perez did not have the rights to sell it to Endemol Latino for the production of a TV show.
The lawsuit said Endemol Latino refused to stop making the show even after the Quintanilla's sent notice to cease and decist. The production company said their agreement with Perez is based off a different contract.
In the next day or so, Valdez will officially recuse himself from the case. The case will then be moved to a different district with a different judge.
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