According to TMZ, the pop star threatened to have the rapper criminally prosecuted after she learned that he'd secretly recorded a phone conversation they shared to discuss his lyrics about her in his controversial single "Famous."
TMZ claims to have a copy of a letter that Taylor's lawyer sent Kanye's lawyer in February in which the "Bad Blood" singer's attorney made it clear that in California, it's considered a felony to secretly record a phone conversation.
"Demand is hereby made that you immediately destroy all such recordings, provide us of assurance that this has been done, and also assurance that these recordings have not been previously disseminated," the letter reportedly commands.
Taylor can now file a lawsuit against both Kanye and his wife, Kim Kardashian West, for the criminal offense.
The reality TV star became culpable on July 17 when she took to Snapchat to disseminate the recording of her husband's discussion with Taylor in a series of videos.
The snaps show a computer monitor playing a video of Kanye in what appears to be a recording studio as he speaks with a woman who sounds like Taylor.
In one snap, Kanye can be heard reciting the "Famous" lyrics, "For all my Southside [expletive] that know me best / I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex."
In a following snap, Taylor purportedly refers to the lyric as a compliment.
"What I give a f--- about is just you as a person and as a friend," Kanye says. "I want things that make you feel good. I don't want to do rap that feels bad."
Taylor then appears to sign off on the song by saying, "Go with whatever line you think is better. It's obviously very tongue in cheek either way. … And I really appreciate you telling me about it. That's really nice. … I really appreciate it. The heads up is so nice. … Even asking or seeing if I would be okay with it and I just really appreciate it. I never would have expected you to like tell me about a line in one of your songs."
Kanye then thanks Taylor for being "so cool about it."
"I just have a responsibility to you as a friend," he continues.
Taylor then chimes in about the bouquet of flowers Kanye sent her following the 2015 VMAs, saying the photo she took of them was one of her most-liked posts on Instagram.
"I don't think anybody would listen to that and be like, 'Oh, that's a real dig. She must be crying,'" Taylor adds of the proposed "Famous" lyrics.
"You gotta tell the story the way that it happened to you and the way that you experienced it," she continues. "You honestly didn't know who I was before that [the 2009 MTV VMAs]. … It doesn't matter if I sold 7 million of that album before you did that, which was what happened. You didn't know who I was before that. It's fine."
"I'm always gonna respect you," she concludes. "And I'm really glad that you have the respect to call me and tell me that about the song."
The illegal recording contradicts previous claims by Taylor and her team that Kanye never called to get her approval for the track.
"Kanye did not call for approval, but to ask Taylor to release his single 'Famous' on her Twitter account," a rep for the singer said in a statement to E! News in February. "She declined and cautioned him about releasing a song with such a strong misogynistic message. Taylor was never made aware of the actual lyric, 'I made that b---- famous.'"
The leaked video does not include any discussion of that specific lyric or of Kanye's request for Taylor to debut the song on her Twitter account, which Taylor addressed on Instagram on July 18 after Kim's snaps went live.
"That moment when Kanye West secretly records your phone call, then Kim posts it on the Internet," the pop star captioned the text post.
The post reads in full:
"Where in the video of Kanye telling me he was going to call me 'that bitch' in his song? It doesn't exist because it never happened. You don't get to control someone's emotional response to being called 'that bitch' in front of the entire world. Of course I wanted to like the song. I wanted to believe Kanye when he told me that I would love the song. I wanted us to have a friendly relationship. He promised to play the song for me, but he never did. While I wanted to be supportive of Kanye on the phone call, you cannot 'approve' a song you haven't heard. Being falsely printed as a liar when I was never given the full story or played any part of the song is character assassination. I would very much like to be excluded from this narrative, one that I have never asked to be a part of, since 2009."
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