Obama ‘Hope’ Poster Artist Sentenced To Probation For Destroying Evidence Related To AP Lawsuit

Artist Shepard Fairey — best known for his iconic “Hope” posters during President Barack Obama‘s 2008 campaign — has been sentenced to two years of probation and fined $25,000 for destroying evidence related to his civil lawsuit with the Associated Press.

In February, Fairey pleaded guilty to destroying and fabricating evidence related to the lawsuit, which centered around whether the image of Obama used by Fairey violated AP copyright.

Fairey’s statement, via The New York Times:

In a statement issued after his sentencing by United States Magistrate Judge Frank Maas, Mr. Fairey, 42, said, “My wrong-headed actions, born out of a moment of fear and embarrassment, have not only been financially and psychologically costly to myself and my family, but also helped to obscure what I was fighting for in the first place— the ability of artists everywhere to be inspired and freely create art without reprisal.”

In 2009, Fairey sued the AP following the accusation of copyright infringement. In the suit, he “claimed he had used a different photograph, but later admitted that he had been mistaken and had tried to cover up his mistake. At the time he pleaded guilty, he said he was ‘ashamed’ of his actions.”


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