Rap and graffiti tagging are two street art forms infused with look-at-me vanity, but when combined by tagger Buket they helped produce a downfall that is spectacular even to a public jaded by mega-egos. Known on his birth certificate as Cyrus Yazdani, the 26-year-old Buket pleaded guilty last December to 32 counts of felony vandalism for a statewide gallery of tags including a series along the L.A. River bed's concrete walls. He was fined more than $103,000 and given a suspended three-year sentence.
But when a hip hop-backed YouTube video of Buket tagging a
Hollywood Freeway overpass in the broadest daylight came to investigators' attention, they started looking at tags around town and discovered some post-plea Buket bombs on the Seventh Street Bridge, the Cesar Chavez Bridge and in the 4200 block of South Broadway. Arrested again in May, Buket received a suspended sentence in July for four of the five newest vandalism charges.
However, on September 10 Superior Court Judge James Bianco
revoked his Get Out of Jail Free card and reimposed Buket's three-year sentence that had been suspended back in December. Buket had earned priceless street cred for
his YouTube stunt, but Bianco piled on another eight months for the graffiti artist's newest bombs — and fined Buket
an additional $14,172 for his troubles.