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Judge orders property owner to pay 21 graffiti artists $6.7 million for covering up their murals


What’s going on?

A property owner who painted over dozens of murals on a building he owned in Long Island City has now been told to pay $6.7 million to the graffiti artists by a Brooklyn judge.

Catch me up:

Lawyers for the 21 graffiti artists in the unusual case argued that the murals were protected under the Visual Artists Rights Act, a law used to shield public art of “recognized stature” even when it’s created on someone’s else property, the New York Times reported.

Wait … so the vandals won? How does that work?

A civil jury found that Jerry Wolkoff, owner of the 5Pointz complex, broke the law by painting over the murals in 2013. Judge Frederick Block ruled that 45 of the dozens of whitewashed-over murals had enough artistic merit to be protected under VARA and awarded the artists the maximum in damages.

Jeffy shared this story on today’s show, and Doc was not happy to hear about a property owner’s rights being violated.

“I hate this, absolutely, it’s his building. He can do what he wants,” Doc said. “This is asinine.”

To see more from Doc, visit his channel on TheBlaze and listen live to “The Morning Blaze with Doc Thompson” weekdays 6 a.m. – 9 a.m. ET, only on TheBlaze Radio Network.

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