General News

Rihanna wins T-shirt court battle

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Jul 31, 2013 | 6:41am EDT

Pop star Rihanna has won a $5 million (£3.3 million) legal battle with a British clothing store over T-shirts bearing her image. The We Found Love hitmaker issued a writ against bosses of the Topshop chain demanding they stop selling a line of items featuring a photograph of her which was taken without her permission. She was seeking an injunction, $5 million in damages, and a pledge that the remaining T-shirts - which were sold under the name 'Rihanna Tank' - will be destroyed. The star's lawyers alleged the use of the unauthorised picture duped fans and could have damaged the singer's reputation. On Wednesday (31Jul13), a judge at London's High Court ruled in Rihanna's favour, stating that although no U.K. laws exist to protect the reproduction of a star's image, in this case Topshop bosses had 'passed off' the garments as Rihanna T-shirts. Mr Justice Birss told the court, "The mere sale by a trader of a T-shirt bearing an image of a famous person is not an act of passing off. However, I find that Topshop's sale of this T-shirt was an act of passing off." A decision on the award of any damages is expected to be made at a later date.

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