Russell Simmons and Ben Chavis filed a lawsuit
against the State Lobbying commission in the U.S. District Court in Manhattan.
The lawsuit request a probe of Simmons’ Hip-Hop Summit Action Network be stopped.
"I am suing the state of New York for violating
my first amendment rights," Simmons told AllHipHop.com. "I aint gonna
let them punk me."
The probe was sparked by the HipHop Summit’s
protest of the Rockefeller drug laws. Earlier this week, the State Lobbying
commission hit Chavis with a subpoena and said that Simmons would probably be
served papers in the future.
The lawsuit filed by Simmons requests the halting
of subpoenas and the eliciting sworn testimony concerning how they raised money
to hold their June rally at City Hall in New York.
The commission alleges the HipHop Summit Action
Network was engaged in lobbying and didn’t make the proper filings under state
Simmons alleges that he was merely exercising
his free speech.
"I am not going to register with the government
or the lobbying commission just to express my opinion," Simmons said.