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Last Updated: Friday, 16 December 2005, 16:25 GMT
Beatles sue EMI in royalties row
The Beatles
The Beatles made a global impact on the pop music market
The surviving Beatles and relatives of the band's late members have begun legal action against record company EMI to get royalties allegedly worth 30m.

Sir Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and relations of George Harrison and John Lennon claim EMI owes record royalties to their company Apple Corps.

The band have issued legal proceedings in the High Court in London and the Supreme Court in New York.

EMI said it welcomed "full financial transparency" with its artists.


The band allege EMI owes more than 30m in record royalties to Apple, which was allegedly uncovered during an audit of Apple accounts.

Legal proceedings were issued on Thursday in the High Court in London and the Supreme Court in New York.

Apple Corp chief Neil Aspinall said: "We have tried to reach a settlement through good faith negotiations and regret that our efforts have been in vain.

"Despite very clear provisions in our contracts, EMI persist in ignoring their obligations and duty to account fairly and with transparency.

"Apple and the Beatles are, once again, left with no choice but to sue EMI."


The Beatles' last legal battle with EMI was in 1991, when Apple won a High Court ruling preventing the firm releasing a box set of two albums.

The current negotiations over the alleged unpaid royalties have been under way for more than two years, an Apple spokeswoman said.

An EMI spokeswoman said it was not unusual for artists to request an audit of their record label accounts.

"We have no problem with it as we like to have full financial transparency with our artists," she added.

"Sometimes there are differences of opinion, not least when record contracts are complex.

"Sometimes artists resort to the courts or mediation, and 99 times out of 100 the problems are resolved amicably for a small proportion of the claim.

"EMI has offered to go to mediation but, sadly, Apple rejected that offer."

The spokeswoman added the company had no comment to make about the ongoing litigation.

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