Rihanna is reportedly suing British fashion retail chain Topshop for $5 million because it sold a t-shirt range using her image without permission.
The Barbadian pop singer’s team claimed they’d tried to negotiate with Topshop owners Arcadia Group for eight months over the rights to her image, the New York Post reports. But the response was insultory.
“They offered her $5,000 and said they don’t care,” an-unnamed source told the newspaper.
The source then went on to say, “Even though the U.K. laws don’t protect the artist, she has decided to move forward and sue Topshop. She has spent almost $US1 million in litigation at this point. She says it’s the principle, and wants to make a statement about it. They are taking advantage of artists. It is just exploitation. What they are doing is wrong.”
A Topshop source said “This issue is related to a T-shirt provided to Topshop by a third-party supplier. We are aware it is the subject of litigation. [There are] public documents”.
Topshop has built an image of British cool. Its owner, the billionaire entrepreneur Philip Green, is close friends with the model Kate Moss, who had a fashion-line with the retailer, and its brand is popular with the likes of Disney star Demi Lovato and Kim Kardashian.
Green and Rihanna would have been expected to iron-out any issues without the course of litigation. The pair had been on good terms, and were spotted together in Barbados during the Christmas break in 2010.