Jay Z wins $7 million copyright legal case over Roc-A-Fella logo

Lawsuit has been ongoing for four years

A $7 million (£5.37 million) lawsuit against Jay Z and his former label partners that accused them of breach of contract and copyright infringement over the logo for Roc-A-Fella Records, has been dismissed.

Clothing designer Dwayne Walker filed the suit in 2012 in which he claimed he created the artwork in 1995 depicting a vinyl record that served as the basis for the Roc-A-Fella logo.

Jay Z, co-founder Damon Dash, Roc-A-Fella and its parent company, Universal Music Group, denied Walker’s claims, saying the logo was designed by an in-house art director.

Walker also claimed that he and Dash signed a contract that entitled him to royalties from the logo, but U.S. District Judge Andrew Carter has now ruled there was little evidence to prove the document existed, reports Reuters.

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Along with Walker, two other people purported to have seen the contract, but Judge Carter ruled their testimony was too weak.

He wrote in his decision: “This leaves only plaintiff’s own self-serving testimony that he drafted the contract, that he and Dash signed it, and that he lost track of it in 1998.”

Judge Carter also said that Walker waited too long to file a copyright claim, taking five years, instead of three, to sue Roc-A-Fella after learning he was allegedly owed royalties.

But Walker plans to appeal against the decision. His lawyer Gregory Berry said: “Walker made the logo in 1995. Then in 2013, in response to this suit – never before – the defendants find a guy who is willing to claim now that HE made the logo … Sound like a factual question for trial? We agree.”

Meanwhile, Beyonce and Jay Z are planning to host a huge Tidal charity concert in New York City next month (October).
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