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City settles 'Topless Paparazzo' suit for $40,000

Oct. 31, 2013 at 4:14 PM

NEW YORK, Oct. 31 (UPI) -- New York's "Topless Paparazzo" won a $40,000 settlement from the city after she was repeatedly arrested while being topless in public.

Holly Van Voast filed a lawsuit against the city in May, alleging she had been wrongfully arrested or detained at least 10 times since 2011 while out in public shirtless with a painted-on mustache and a blond wig as Harvey Van Toast, the Topless Paparazzo, the New York Daily News reported Thursday.

"I can only call it abuse ... I was punished for being a creative New Yorker, for what people think New York is," Van Voast said.

The city settled with Van Voast for $40,000.

"I think the amount is very low, considering what happened to me," she said.

The city agreed to pay Van Voast's $37,250 legal bill.

"The city had solid defenses in these cases. Settlement for this amount for 10 incidents was merely a business decision," a spokeswoman for the city's Law Department said.

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