Lady Gaga has prevailed in a legal battle connected to the 2021 theft of her two French bulldogs, Koji and Gustav.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Holly Fujie on Monday ruled in favor of Gaga in a lawsuit alleging the singer did not follow through on promises to pay a “no questions asked” $500,000 reward for the return of her dogs.
Jennifer McBride, who returned Gaga’s dogs and was later charged for receiving stolen property, filed the suit in February.
McBride attempted to sue Gaga for the reward money in addition to over $1.5 million in damages for breach of contract, fraud by false promise and fraud by misrepresentation. In the complaint, she claimed that Gaga never intended to pay the reward money and intended for law enforcement to ask questions about the return of the bulldogs.
Gaga’s attorney did not respond to a request for comment about Monday’s ruling.
McBride claimed in court that, although she was aware the dogs were stolen when she received them, she only took possession of them to ensure their protection and safe return.
Lady Gaga holds her dog Koji in 2015. STAR MAX / IPx via AP
Although McBride alleged “her motivation was to protect the bulldogs (and also to collect $500,000), this alleged motivation does not negate her guilt of the charge because she has admitted receiving the bulldogs with knowledge that they were stolen property,” the court ruling said.
McBride’s attorney did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Gaga’s bulldogs were stolen at gunpoint in February 2021 while strolling through Hollywood with her dog walker, Ryan Fischer. Fischer was shot and later appealed for financial help online while recovering from his injuries.
At the time, Gaga — whose real name is Stefani Germanotta — was away filming in Rome. She offered a $500,000 dollar “no questions asked” reward on social media in exchange for the return of her dogs.
Two days after the theft, McBride returned the bulldogs to a Los Angeles police station. She then requested the reward.
Three men and two accomplices, including McBride, were charged in connection to the theft. McBride knew at least two of her co-conspirators for years prior to the crime. She pleaded no contest to receiving stolen property in December.
Natalie Kainz is a news associate for NBC News.