Lady Gaga has issues with the law… again. After being sued for $30.5 millions in March last year, by a songwriter and music producer claiming he helped launch Gaga’s career, co-writing hits and securing a record deal, while Gaga denied him his share of song royalties and merchandising revenue, the famous singer will have to face a new legal action against her. US pop star is accused of misrepresenting charitable donations from wristbands sold to benefit tsunami and earthquake victims in Japan this year. The white rubber bracelets were sold for $5 and inscribed in red with the phrase “We pray for Japan,” in English, as well as in Japanese.
After the earthquake and tsunami disasters in March 2011 that devastated Japan, Lady Gaga created the rubber wristbands and the singer’s website advertised that all proceeds from sales of the wristband would benefit victims. The suit, which is being pursued by Michigan legal network 1800LAWFIRM, also alleges that Gaga and Universal Music Group, and the Bravado International Groupher lacked transparency and overcharged fans on shipping costs in order to inflate reports of total donations, which Gaga’s camp says came out to $3 million.
“While we commend Lady Gaga for her philanthropic efforts, we want to ensure that claims that ‘all proceeds will be donated to Japan’s earthquake’ are in fact true,” 1800LAWFIRM attorney Alyson Oliver said in a statement. “Our intention via this lawsuit is to uncover any improprieties committed by Lady Gaga and appropriate the full donations assumed to the victims in Japan.”
The law firm that launched the legal action against the Grammy Awards winner also claims that the star violated several federal racketeering and consumer protection laws in promoting and selling the benefit wristbands, which were sold through her website for $5 each plus shipping costs.
Thus, Lady Gaga joins the long list of celebrities whose charitable efforts have collapsed or gone wrong. Madonna, for instance, did not manage to build a school for girls in Malawi after an audit showed that some of the $3.8 million raised for that project was unaccounted for, while Kanye West quietly folded his Kanye West Foundation this year.
So, Gaga’s spokesperson is defending her, saying that “This misguided lawsuit is without merit and unfortunately takes attention away from the kind deeds of the fans around the world who are supporting the people of Japan. The entire $5 donation made with the purchase of each bracelet is going to support the disaster relief. No profit is being made on shipping costs. Sales tax charges were made in accordance with local legal requirements”.
This entry was posted on Sunday, July 3rd, 2011 at 11:26 pm and is filed under News.