Cardi B (photo: Frank Schwichtenberg (CC by SA 4.0))

Photo: Frank Schwichtenberg (CC by SA 4.0)

The strange case of a man suing rapper Cardi B over a tattoo that appears on the cover of one of her mixtapes is continuing toward its dramatic climax.

Legal representatives of Cardi B have officially answered the original complaint in a California U.S. District Court. Unsurprisingly, they are denying all claims of damages.

The plaintiff in this case is a man named Kevin Brophy Jr., who reportedly once worked in the entertainment industry. Today, he works for a company that is involved in surfing, and as such, he often has his shirt off, which exposes the distinctive tattoo on his back that features a tiger fighting a snake.

This same tattoo is depicted on the back on an undisclosed male model who is performing oral sex on Cardi B while she swills beer on the cover of her mixtape “Gangsta Bitch Music, Vol. 1” (see below).

Brophy insists that not only was Cardi B using his likeness without his consent, but that the image disparaged him by implying that he had sex with her.

That is apparently worth a $5 million lawsuit, which Cardi B’s lawyers unsuccessfully tried to dismiss.

This case has not exactly moved swiftly through the courts. It was originally filed back in October of 2017 and is scheduled to go to trial in August of 2020. Cardi B has already given deposition in the case in which she called Brophy’s charges “bullshit”.

Now, her lawyers have backed this up, with far more genteel language.

The crux of their denials of the claims are twofold. First, they insist that none of the proceeds of “Gangsta Bitch Music, Vol. 1.” could be reasonably derived from the tattoo on cover of the mixtape. Their second point seems to be that Brophy has not suffered any real damages from the release of the mixtape.

How this will all end is anyone’s guess, but you can bet that Cardi B and her team will be paying a lot closer attention to her future album covers.