Cardi B is expected to appear in front of a jury next year after she was hit with a lawsuit for featuring a man’s distinctive back tattoo on the cover of her 2016 mixtape, Gangsta Bitch Music Vol 1.
In the court papers obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, model Kevin Brophy Jr claimed Cardi had used his likeness without his permission in “a misleading, offensive, humiliating and provocatively sexual way.” Although Brophy wasn’t photographed on the cover, his tattoo was featured on the model pictured in the artwork performing a sex act on the rapper.
THR also reported that a judge had rejected Cardi’s argument of transformative fair use of the image. “To constitute a transformative fair use, the revised image must have significant transformative or creative elements to make it something more than mere likeness or imitation,” Judge Cormac Carney said in the statement. “A reasonable jury, in this case, could conclude that there are insufficient transformative or creative elements on the GBMV1 cover to constitute a transformative use of Plaintiff’s tattoo.”
A date for her court appearance has not yet been announced.
This lawsuit is the latest in Cardi B’s long list of music-related dramas. Earlier in July, rising rapper Dela Wesst claimed Bardi plagiarized her bars on “Clout,” her 2019 collaboration with Offset. However, the Bronx rapper claimed that she wrote her verse before Wesst released her freestyle.