The rap group have taken action after the FBI labelled their fans as gang members
Insane Clown Posse have filed a lawsuit against the FBI and the US Justice Department after they took action to classify fans of the band as gang members.
The suit was filed in Detroit by the rap group’s lawyers as well as representatives of the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan earlier today (January 8). The New York Times reports that plaintiffs Joseph Bruce and Joseph Utsler – otherwise known as Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope – have come to the defence of their fans, the Juggalos.
A suit was first mooted in 2011, when the FBI’s National Gang Intelligence Center called the Juggalos “a loosely organized hybrid gang”. The group state that this report has lead to their fans being persecuted by authorities causing “significant harm.” A website, Juggalos Fight Back, was set up by lawyers asking fans to report “negative consequences” they’d experienced at the hands of “law enforcement, border patrol, airline security, or other local, state, or federal governmental agency or employee”.
Four Juggalo plaintiffs have also been named in the new suit, saying that have been victims of police harassment. “We’re not a gang, we’re a family,” said Joseph Utsler of Insane Clown Posse. “We’re a diverse group of men and women, united by our love of music and nothing more. We’re not a threat, a public menace or a danger to society.”
Last year it was reported that Insane Clown Posse were being sued by their former publicist and attorney, who claimed she was sexually harassed and asked to “act unethically [and] illegally” while working for the controversial rap duo. Andrea Pellegrini claims she was called a “bitch”, given a “large sex toy” after breaking up with her boyfriend and asked to obtain illegal automatic weapons for a photoshoot while working for the pair’s Psychopathic Records imprint.