A lawsuit created a precedent that people may not have the rights to depict the tattoos on their body.
A Texas-based nonprofit organization is suing a group of tattoo artists for illegally adding tattoo designs to their clients’ bodies. Last year the law firm filed a lawsuit against two of the artists. (Read here and here)
Now, because the lawsuit is about more than just the alleged crimes, the attorneys are seeking more than $50 million in damages.
The nonprofit group that filed the lawsuit is the Association for the Freedom of Independent Media (AFIM), a non-profit organization dedicated to “protecting consumers against the sale and distribution of false and pirated advertising,” according to the organization’s website.
So how is a non-profit organization supposed to represent the rights of tattoo artists? What is AFIM really protecting consumers from?
According to a letter from the Attorney General’s office to AFIM that the group sent to media outlets on April 7 regarding the lawsuit against tattoo artists, the nonprofit represents three types of artists that may be affected by the lawsuit.
The Attorney General’s letter also notes that one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, Robert “Buddy” Russell, has received a cease and desist order from the Attorney General’s office based on the same lawsuit.
The letter does not state that tattoo artists are protected from lawsuits by the Attorney General’s office.
The letter reads, “It is important that you know that AFIM has obtained judgments against four of the defendants in this case — that AFIM has obtained judgments against four of the defendants in this case,” according to the letter.
However, in the lawsuit, the Attorney General’s office says that AFIM is the wrong party to bring the law suit against tattoo artists.
In the lawsuit, filed on Tuesday, April 11, the Attorney General’s office says that the case concerns the sale and distribution of false advertising.
The Attorney General’s letter also states that the organization is only claiming the right to “enforce” laws that protect the public.
“AFIM cannot assert any type of individual rights to protect the individual artist or, in the case of a tattoo parlor, the individual customer,” according to the letter.
AFIM’s statement released to the