Mexico Ranchero star sues shadowy concert promoter

MEXICO CITY (AP) — One of Mexico's most famous singers, Vicente Fernandez, is suing a concert organizer that is also being investigated in Spain for allegedly laundering drug money through concerts in Spain, Latin America and the United States.

Fernandez' representatives, Star Productions, said in a statement they have taken legal action against the Total Conciertos company for failure to pay Fernandez for some of his appearances during his "International Farewell Tour" in 2012.

"Some of these events were organized by Total Conciertos S.A.S., which didn't deliver the agreed-on payment. However, Don Vicente Fernandez decided to perform on those dates and in those cities because of the respect and affection for the audience," Star Productions said in a statement.

Spain's Guardia Civil confirmed Total Conciertos is being investigated for allegedly having used its concerts to launder drug money, but hasn't suggested Fernandez knew about it. The Guardia Civil said in a statement that several mainly Colombian suspects had allegedly arranged with some Spaniards to launder drug money through the concerts.

The Guardia Civil said four people have been detained in connection with case. Reached by telephone in Colombia, Andre Barco, one of the former executives of the company, said Fernandez had a right to sue, because he indeed had not been paid for the concerts.

Barco said he has not been notified of any warrant or investigation against him in Spain or anywhere else. In comments earlier to local media, Barco said the concert revenues hadn't lived up to expectations and the tickets sales had been used to pay suppliers. He denied having received or laundered drug money.

The 71-year-old Fernandez sang dozens of hits over a four-decade career, including "Volver Volver," and "El Rey."

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