From the New York Times:
[Leonard] Cohen, 71, filed suit against his longtime personal manager, Kelley Lynch, accusing her of stealing more than $5 million over the past dozen years, including five years he spent at a Zen Buddhist retreat. Mr. Cohen is also suing his former tax lawyer, Richard A. Westin, accusing him of mismanaging money Mr. Cohen had set aside as a retirement fund. Mr. Cohen is also seeking damages from Neal Greenberg, his investment adviser from 1997 to 2004, who the singer said allowed Ms. Lynch to steal millions by not telling him what was going on.
... Mr. Cohen hired Ms. Lynch, an assistant to his lawyer and manager, to oversee his personal affairs after the manager, Martin Machat, died in 1988. She eventually assumed more responsibility for Mr. Cohen's career and became his manager.
...The money at issue in the lawsuit came from two transactions orchestrated by Ms. Lynch. The first was the 1997 sale of Mr. Cohen's publishing company, Stranger Music, to Sony; the other deal, also with Sony, involved the 2001 sale of Mr. Cohen's future royalties from Mr. Cohen's 127-song catalog, which includes often-covered classics like "Bird on a Wire" and "Suzanne."
...In 1993, Mr. Cohen took a break from recording and touring and decamped to the Mount Baldy Zen Center in Los Angeles, where he remained for five years. According to Mr. Cohen's complaint, Ms. Lynch, upset over a loss of income because the singer's career was on hiatus, began to drain money from three charitable trusts established with the Sony profits.
...Mr. Cohen said he had not suspected that his money was depleted until October 2004, when an informant tipped off his daughter, Lorca Cohen. "Every month my investment manager, an old friend of Ms. Lynch's, and a successful trader, sent me a report that my savings were safe, intact, even flourishing," Mr. Cohen said, referring to Mr. Greenberg. He says that Mr. Greenberg and Mr. Westin, whom Mr. Lynch had hired to help minimize taxes on the two Sony deals, charged Mr. Cohen $4 million in unnecessary transaction costs.
While Mr. Cohen awaits the outcome of the various lawsuits, he said, he has started to sell his assets and has taken out a mortgage on his house. "There is a great sense of family solidarity, and we are all working hard to keep the ship afloat," he said. "My son said: 'Dad, do whatever you have to do, but don't do it for us. We've had a great life, and we can take care of ourselves.' "
I haven't heard anything this depressing since the last time I listened to "The Future" by Leonard Cohen. But I imagine this will work out all right for him, and he and Trent Reznor will be sipping martinis poolside in no time.