Barbadian singer Rihanna has won a $5 million legal battle with a British clothing store over T-shirts bearing her image.
The We Found Love songstress filed suit 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 demand that the remaining T-shirts – which were sold under the name ‘Rihanna Tank’ – will be destroyed. Her lawyers alleged the use of the unauthorized picture duped fans and could have damaged the singer’s reputation.
On Wednesday, a judge at London’s High Court ruled in Rihanna’s favor, 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 seemingly official Rihanna t-shirts.
The judge 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. Stay tuned as the information is made available.