Cardi B complainant ordered to pay her legal fees after suing for use of his back tattoo

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The man who filed a complaint against Cardi B has been ordered to pay her legal fees.

Plaintiff Kevin Brophy filed a lawsuit against the Up rapper for using an image of his back tattoo on the cover of her mixtape Gangsta B**ch Music Vol 1. After a jury found in October this year that the cover art did not otherwise use Brophy's likeness or portray him in a negative light, Brophy filed a request to overturn the verdict.

On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney ruled against overturning the earlier jury's verdict, arguing that the filing was too late and lacked merit. The judge subsequently ordered Brophy to pay the rapper's attorney fees.

In a ruling obtained by Rolling Stone, the judge argued that "reasons abound to sustain the jury's verdict of not liable on all claims" - including that, on the cover, "the model appears non-white with black hair while Brophy is white and has a shaved head". For this reason, the judge ruled that the man on the mixtape's cover could not be mistaken for Brophy, despite the copied tattoo.

"The jury had an ample basis for its verdict. For example, the jury could have reasonably concluded that the back tattoo on the model on the mixtape cover at issue in this suit was not sufficiently identifiable with Brophy to constitute misappropriation of his likeness or depiction in a false light," the judge summarised. "Because the model's face is not visible, identification based on facial appearance is impossible."