Lady Gaga sued over charity wristbands

Lady Gaga is being sued for $5 million on “Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization” charges for the wristbands she was selling on her website to aid victims of the Japanese tsunami. Her “We Pray for Japan” bracelets were being sold for $5 plus $3.99 shipping and handling, but the lawsuit states the charges were “in excess of the amount required to ship the wristbands based on their weight.” They claim she was trying to profit from the sales by retaining “a portion of the proceeds from each transaction instead of donating all proceeds to the Japan Relief Efforts.” Fans were also charged .60 cents tax for each bracelet, which raised a red flag as charitable donations are tax exempt.

According to David Darby, a lawyer with Michigan-based 1-800-LAW-FIRM, which launched the lawsuit, if all proceeds were going to the victims of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami as Gaga’s website claimed, there would have been no need to charge tax. He says, “We praise Lady Gaga for her creativity and desire to help the victims of this terrible disaster, but we want to see all charities accurately represent how they handle the funds collected.” Firm partner Alyson Oliver says Gaga’s representatives admit that some of the money from the bracelets was retained, but they wouldn’t disclose how much. She says: “When you use your celebrity and your power as a musician to take money from people under false pretences, that’s just wrong.'” It’s alleged that Gaga she has violated consumer protection laws in every U.S. state, and to top it off , some fans are complaining that they haven’t received their wristbands yet, though it stated on the website that they would be shipped by March 25.

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Comments & Discussion

  1. Karyn • June 28, 2011 @ 10:50 AM

    Hmmmm, Sounds a LOT like the Ebay selling standards. Buy low, Shipping rates++++

  2. Germain • June 28, 2011 @ 12:39 PM

    When it first came out and I wrote a comment on this website that first, the bracelet was ugly as hell and not at all creative, second, some celebrities do it for the publicity and actually make money off those charities, people were ready to throw rocks at me. I’m here now to tell you, I told you so. It’s the American way, Americans want to look good, it doesn’t matter if it’s rotten in the middle, as long as it looks good on the outside. Gaga is no different.

  3. Connie • June 28, 2011 @ 3:26 PM

    Maybe she’ll speak up and explain what’s going on but the fact that she taxed people is pretty suspicious. It’s not even in her best interest to sell bracelets and skim a few dollars from them. She makes millions from concerts, she doesn’t have to steal from charity/her fans.

  4. Monique • June 29, 2011 @ 11:27 PM

    Its not like 100% of the money made by charity actually goes to the charity anyway! Anyone who thinks it does is just silly!!
    Ask the people from katrina if all the money went to help them?! Or 911. Or Cancer! With the billions they make a year, you’d think all cancer would be abolished! The CEO makes over $900,000 a year!
    Charity and the Church donation – two of the biggest $camS around!

  5. Monique • June 29, 2011 @ 11:28 PM

    … to KEEP your money and donate your time at a homeless shelter in your own city or town.
    At least then, you’ll know that it made a difference.

  6. Karyn • June 29, 2011 @ 11:51 PM

    Very Good point Monique!! 100% agree

  7. Jo-Anne • June 30, 2011 @ 5:30 AM

    I’d pelt a few rocks your way too, Germain, but not for the bracelet remark….the “It’s the American way” comment…

    please, generalization for a complete nation doesn’t spark interest in anything following that tunnel vision sentence start…

    balance of flying pebbles targets gaga…

  8. jjones • June 30, 2011 @ 7:56 AM

    Not much of a Gaga fan at all, however, I’m guessing the bad judgements were made by her people and it wouldn’t surprise me that the money that was made went to the administrative staff’s expenses for managing this work. Gaga’s people probably didn’t want to take from the current gaga pot of gold, so created a way to recover any costs.

    Having said that, it’s great that some money is going to charity, but I think sometimes the focus is not on the charity, but on the celeb who is behind it which ultimately makes them more poplular thereby making them more money.

    It’s a shame that this is the only way some celebs will even get involved. It should be about the charity, not the recognition. (Sorry about the rambling)

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