Kanye West accused of not returning rare archival pieces in new lawsuit

“The items are all rare, esteemed pieces valued for their scarcity and importance in fashion history,” lawyers for the company claimed

Kanye West has been accused of failing to return several rare, archival pieces of fashion in a new six-figure lawsuit.

High-end fashion rental service David Casavant Archive claims that West, who is now known as Ye, owes hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid fees, and has failed to return more than a dozen “rare, esteemed pieces” (via Billboard).

In the complaint, which was filed on Tuesday (July 6) in Los Angeles court, David Casavant Archive claimed that West ceased paying rental fees in late 2020 for 13 different items in his possession. The unpaid fees, they claim, amount to $221,810 (£185,759).

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“The items are all rare, esteemed pieces valued for their scarcity and importance in fashion history,” lawyers for the company wrote (via Billboard).

“They are not fungible commodities. The replacement fees reflect the loss of future rentals, loan opportunities, publicity, and the lost value to the Archive as a whole, as each lost item is part of a greater collection that derives its value from its completeness.”

Kanye West
Kanye West performs live in 2022. CREDIT: Walik Goshorn/Media Punch/Alamy Live News

The statement continued: “When defendant Ye would occasionally lose items that he had rented from the Archive, defendant Yeezy was billed the replacement fee…All parties understood (as expressed orally and in writing and reflected in many years of prior dealings) that because the garments are not commodities that are easily replaceable.”

“Defendants have not responded meaningfully to plaintiff’s numerous inquiries about defendants’ unpaid balance and the missing items, referring plaintiff to individuals without knowledge or authority to resolve the dispute, or advising plaintiff to send inquiries to inactive email accounts,” the company added.

NME has reached out to representatives of West for comment.

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Last month, West made a surprise appearance at the BET Awards, honouring Sean “Diddy” Combs as the rapper and producer received the Lifetime Achievement Award.

This year’s BET Awards were held on June 26 at Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, and also included performances from Lizzo, Chance the Rapper, Jack Harlow and more.

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