NL Times


Kanye West sues Dutch student over Coinye

US rapper Kanye West has included Dutch student Robbie Hontelé in the trademark infringement lawsuit he filed against the creators of the “COINYE” digital currency.


The new and improved Coinye design. Source: Twitter/@Jean Roubroeks

West claims the COINYE creators are damaging his brand, because the logo for the currency, which is bought and sold over the Internet, features a cartoon version of him wearing his signature “shutter shades.” “With each day that passes, Mr. West’s reputation is irreparably harmed … Consumers are likely to mistakenly believe that Mr. West is the source of these digital coins,” the suit alleges.

Other defendants have been notified since January that they were named; Hontelé received his summons on Friday. “At first the suit didn’t name me, but on Friday I received a summons that included my name,” he said according to He said that the suit takes aim at the developers of COINYE-exchanges which he is the informal spokesperson of.

The suit filed in Manhattan federal court seeks unspecified damages. West had initially sent the developers a cease and desist- letter regarding their use of the name “COINYE West”, after which they they developed a new “crypto coin” they called just “COINYE”. “We removed everything from the coin that infringed on his name and still we have this nonsense,” Hontelé. He said he had joined the project because he did not want anyone with a thick wallet to be able to bar a crypto coin.

The 24-year-old Zoetermeerder appeared confident on his private Facebook page, on which he has invited “friends” to donate COINYE’s for his legal fund. “Just had an interview with @DeSocialClub about @kanyewest and #Coinyecoin. Kanye, I’m ready!,” he shared today.