Judge Rules Rick Ross Can Be a 'Mastermind' in Trademark Dispute

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By George Khoury, Esq. on December 22, 2016 10:56 AM

Rick Ross has got to be feeling pretty smart after a California Federal Court officially ruled that he can use the word "Mastermind" for the title of the album he already released in 2014, and as his self appointed nickname. Another rapper, lesser known Raul Caiz, had trademarked the name years ago, but never achieved notoriety. When Caiz learned of Ross's newest album, he filed a $2 million trademark infringement lawsuit last year after his cease and desist letter went unanswered. Caiz claims to have used the name Mastermind over his 17 year music career and that Ross's use of the album name and nickname was likely to cause confusion.

In response to the lawsuit, Rick Ross filed a counterclaim seeking to have Caiz's trademark cancelled as being overly broad. Recently, the federal court judge dismissed Caiz's claims and granted Ross's request to cancel Caiz's trademark.

Rick Ross Is No Stranger to Litigation

Rick Ross seems to be constantly in the media over some sort of legal battle. Prior to this trademark controversy, Ross was sued by a former drug dealer, who was known as "Freeway" Rick Ross. The famous Rick Ross, whose real name is William Leonard Roberts, is alleged to have adapted the drug dealing Rick Ross's name, look, and persona to create his rapper persona. Freeway has sued Ross and lost a couple time over the name issue.

In addition to naming controversies, Ross has found himself in court over calling the rapper 50 Cent names. The two rappers have made songs insulting each other, have sued each other, and 50 Cent even lured Ross's ex into making a sex tape that he released without her permission (which led to a pretty nasty lawsuit against him).

Not only does Ross seem to be a magnet for legal trouble, but his dogs have even gotten him into a civil lawsuit. Ross's pet pitbulls escaped and attacked a neighbor's dog. The neighbor's dog survived but unfortunately had to be put down.

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