LOS ANGELES (CNS) - A Beverly Hills corporation that controls the trademarks of Pablo Escobar is suing rapper 2 Chainz and a business partner for allegedly infringing the late Colombian cocaine kingpin's brand by naming restaurants and menu items like “Escobar Crab Cakes'' after him, according to court papers obtained today.
Escobar Inc., which owns the intellectual property rights, including trademarks and publicity, related to the deceased drug lord alleges that Tauheed “2 Chainz'' Epps and entrepreneur Mychel “Snoop'' Dillard are profiting off the “goodwill'' associated with the Medellin Cartel founder by opening two Escobar Restaurant and Tapas locations in the Atlanta area.
Representatives of the defendants could not immediately be reached for comment.
Escobar's name, image, likeness, identity and “celebrity persona have tremendous commercial value,'' according to the federal civil suit filed late Wednesday in Los Angeles.
The restaurants are decorated with paintings of Escobar, use his images on social media, and serve dishes named for him, such as a signature crab cakes dish, as well as a cocktail called “The Columbian,'' according to the lawsuit, which seeks at least $10 million in damages.
“Escobar is regarded as one the greatest heroic outlaws of all time by many in Colombia and all over the world,'' according to the suit. “Moreover, Pablo Escobar's life has been the subject of numerous books, films and television shows. Throughout his life, Pablo Escobar was responsible for the construction of houses and football fields in western Colombia for the poor.''
About 16 months after his escape from prison, Escobar was tracked down and killed in December 1993 in a shootout with Colombian armed forces. At the time of his death, he was considered the wealthiest criminal in history, having amassed an estimated net worth of $30 billion.
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