Looks like 50 Cent is going to have to pay a lot more than 50 cents for this one. The rapper was just found guilty in a controversial sex tape trial. A woman and mother from Florida claims that he “humiliated” her by uploading a sex tape of her to the Internet. Now, the musician has to pay $6 million dollars and maybe more.
The woman, Lavonia Leviston, wept when she heard the verdict. She held hands with her lawyer’s wife when she found out that 50 Cent was found guilty. He will have to pay her $3.5 million in damages for using her image without her consent and over $2 million for purposely causing her emotional distress. Apparently, those figures have a decent chance of increasing within the week.
50 Cent wasn’t there to testify at the trial, and he also wasn’t there when the verdict was in. The trial took place in Manhattan, and Supreme Court Justice Geoffrey Wright told the jury to make a note of that. Interestingly, 50 Cent (whose real name is Curtis Jackson) was in New York City at the time to celebrate his birthday. The rapper is 40 years old.
Leviston’s lawyer, Philip Freidin, wanted the rapper to be hit with $20 million after he publicly humiliated his client. Leviston is the mother of two children. Freidin argued that 50 Cent used this video to gain publicity for himself. It was also probably meant to hurt fellow rapper Rick Ross, who is the father of one of Leviston’s children.
Reportedly, Jackson fixed the tape of Leviston and one of her former boyfriends, Maurice Murray by inserting his own character, “Pimpin’ Curly.” The character gives a narration filled with sexual expletives. He also set the video to two of his songs. This video has gained millions of online views. The Internet, as we know, is just as much a curse as it is a blessing.
At the same time, Jackson’s lawyer, James Renard, tried to convince the jury that his client did nothing wrong because Leviston knew what was going to happen to her tape. She didn’t. According to Renard, Jackson didn’t think Leviston’s permission was required because she was already “cool with it.” She wasn’t.
We hope Leviston can find some consolation.