Israeli supermodel Bar Refaeli took the witness stand in the Tel Aviv District Court on Thursday in her lawsuit against Suny Electronics Ltd., the authorized Israeli importer of Samsung mobile phones. She is suing Suny for NIS 4.4 million for breach of contract relating to a 2006 video clip.
"We encountered cheats and crooks," Refaeli testified, referring to Suny executives. She said that her reputation was important to her, and that while she earns a living from her name, the case was not only about money. "Reputation is not something that is necessarily built around money. I do things for free to build my reputation. The fact that we're talking here about business is not just related to money, but also to my image."Refaeli sued Suny in March 2009. She contends that Suny used her image and pictures for purposes not stated in her contact with the company, when it aired live the advertising pictures without her consent. "The pictures were aired without any editing to protect modesty or dignity," she said.
Refaeli contends that the advertisement was also aired in cinemas without her consent and that an attempt was made to photograph text messages sent to her. She says that the contract explicitly stipulates that Suny could not use the name of her partner at the time, Leonardo DiCaprio, but that Suny announced on billboards that the ad clip was with him and that a scene shows her receiving a call from him.