The former boyfriend and manager of “Jersey Shore” star Jenni “JWoWW” Farley has been barred, at least temporarily, from selling nude and semi-nude pictures and videotapes he took of her while she was under pre- and post-operative anesthesia. Nassau County State Supreme Court Justice Jeffrey S. Brown (See Profile) granted a preliminary injunction against the distribution of those and other images pending the resolution of a breach of contract suit Thomas Lippolis has filed against Ms. Farley. Justice Brown has assigned to arbitration the case to arbitration. Mr. Lippolis is demanding $700,000 for what he says he is owed for his strenuous efforts to advance Ms. Farley’s career. The two parted ways after “Jersey Shore” became a reality-TV hit.
“Should these nude or partially nude photos or videos be disseminated pending resolution of the underlying action, the court finds that defendant’s reputation and persona will be irreparably harmed,” Justice Brown wrote in Lippolis v. Farley, 022287-2010, citing §§50, 51 of Civil Rights Law, which prohibits commercial misappropriation of a person’s name or likeness.
Mr. Lippolis took pictures and videos of his ex-girlfriend at professional and social events “for both personal pleasure and professional use,” according to the Jan. 18 decision. He claimed that she was “always a willing participant and always gave consent” and that Ms. Farley’s opposition to their use was in retaliation for his lawsuit against her. The judge observed that Mr. Lippolis “intimates that her actions are ironic considering she allegedly expressed her desires to pose naked in Playboy and expressed her sexual preferences and desires in a book soon to be released.”
Ms. Farley denied that she had ever given permission for the sale of the images. She claimed their publication would violate privacy laws, harm her reputation and potentially violate her contract with MTV, which produces “Jersey Shore.” She said she learned of Mr. Lippolis’ efforts to market the images in September.
Jeffrey I. Baum of Garden City represented Mr. Lippolis. Tarbet Lester & Schoen of Amagansett represented Ms. Farley.