A New York-based photographer is suing Ariana Grande after alleging the singer posted two of his photos without his permission

By Matt McNulty
May 15, 2019 05:45 PM
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Ariana Grande is reportedly being sued for posting photos of herself on social media.

Per court documents published by The Blast and obtained by PEOPLE, professional photographer Robert Barbera filed a lawsuit Monday against the 25-year-old pop star for copyright infringement in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, suing her for allegedly posting two photos on her Instagram account without licensing; the photographer claims Grande never asked for his “permission or consent to publish the photographs.”

A rep for Grande did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

Josiah Kamau/BuzzFoto via Getty

The Blast reports the photographs in question were posted on Grande’s Instagram page in August 2018 and have since been deleted; however, court documents disclosed details about the social media post that identified the specific photos, claiming Grande — who currently has more than 155 million Instagram followers — posted two side-by-side photos of her holding a handbag with the logo from her 2018 album Sweetener emblazoned across it. The Blast adds that the post, which was captioned “Happy Sweetener Day,” received more than three million “likes” before it was taken down.

The photographer, Barbera, is seeking either $25,000 for every photo she posted or whatever profits she made from posting it, per the court documents, which allege: “Barbera is the author of the photographs and has at all times been the sole owner of all right, title and interest in and to the photographs, including the copyright thereto.”

Grande — who won her first Grammy Award earlier this year — is currently on her Sweetener World Tour, performing tracks off her 2018 LP, as well as her smash fifth album thank u, next, which she released just six months after Sweetener.