News Segment


February 14, 2005

Motley Crue’s Nikki Sixx is no sneaker pimp.

A Los Angeles jury has awarded the rocker a legal victory over shoemaker Vans Inc. that could be worth upward of $1 million, according to his lawyer.

Sixx contended that the SoCal-based footwear company used an image of the musician without his permission to promote its Tony Trujillo sneaker line last year.

Vans used photos of the Crue’s bad-boy bassist and pro skater Trujillo from a San Francisco Skater of the Year award ceremony organized by Thrasher magazine and sponsored by Vans.

Then, per the suit, Vans used the pictures for a massive nationwide promotion for a sneaker line bearing Trujillo’s name. Ads featuring Sixx palling it up with Trujillo ran in magazines like Blender and FHM and appeared in oversized displays in retail outlets.

But the Motley man said he never signed off on the ad campaign, hence his suit.

On Feb. 9, a Los Angeles Superior Court jury found in favor of Sixx on three counts of misappropriation of his right of publicity and false endorsement.

“I’m happy, not so much for myself, but for all artists who are unfairly taken advantage of by major corporations,” the 46-year-old Sixx in a statement. “I hope this encourages other performers to stand up to those who would exploit them without securing the necessary rights.”

Chris Overholser, a spokesman for Vans, told E! Online Monday, “We believe that we had the right to use the photos in the manner that we did. However, the jury believed otherwise.”

Meanwhile, the formerly hard-partying Sixx (he recently told Rolling Stone that he would regularly snort his own height–over 6 feet–in cocaine back in the 1980s) is gearing up to hit the road with the recently regrouped Crue this week. The Red, White and Crue tour kicks off Thursday in Fort Lauderdale.

Courtesy of