Rick Ross is getting sued, yet again, for trademark infringement, except this time it’s for his album title name not his own. Rapper Teflon Don, born Donald Askew Jr., filed a lawsuit today (Aug. 30) against Ross, also naming DJ Khaled, Def Jam Recordings, Universal Music Group, Slip-N-Slide Records and Maybach Music Group in the pending suit, for “trademark infringement, common-law trademark rights, trademark delusion, unfair competition, tortious interference and fraud and identity theft,” according to MemphisRap.com.
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Teflon Don claims that Rick Ross and everyone involved in Ross’ Billboard 200 No. 2 album, “Teflon Don,” infringed on his brand, ultimately disrupting his growth and success. “I’m building a name, I’m building a brand and for someone to come with an album and an alias the name “Teflon Don” and they have big budgets to put behind it, it blocks me from progressing. I was climbing the ladder and it feels like I went straight downhill and I don’t feel like that’s fair.”
Allegedly, Teflon had “business dealings” with Khaled, UMG’s southern division of Def Jam Recordings and was working with Maybach Music Group. “On the song ‘I Represent’ DJ Khaled can be heard saying, ‘To My Homie Teflon Don, we the best,’… all these cats knew about me,” Teflon Don said of 2007 song, “I Represent,” off Coast 2 Coast Mixtape Vol. 10, which features the rapper.
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“It is almost belittling to me because the music he [Rick Ross] puts out is almost demeaning and the music that I put out is more positive,” Teflon said. “We have two different crowds and it is making me lose clientele based on the fact that they think that I am a negative rapper. So when they hear that Teflon Don wants to perform at a certain place sometimes they think negative and that was not the brand that I was building all these years.”
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Rick Ross faced a trademark infringement lawsuit last year (June 18) when ex-drug lord Ricky “Freeway” Ross claimed the Bawse stole his name to heighten his rap success. The case was thrown out of court one month later (July 3), coincidentally days before the release of “Teflon Don.”