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Last Updated: Monday, 1 December, 2003, 22:34 GMT
OJ's lawyer hired in Pooh battle
Johnnie Cochran
Mr Cochran has a history of high-profile cases
The lawyer who helped acquit OJ Simpson is to represent a family suing Walt Disney over unpaid royalties from Winnie the Pooh.

Johnnie Cochran, the US's most high-profile celebrity lawyer, has been hired by the Slesinger family in the hope of securing a breakthrough in the exceptionally long-running legal case.

The family holds US marketing rights for the cartoon bear.

They accuse Disney of short-changing them in royalty payments.

Hotting up

The battle over Winnie the Pooh is now more than a decade old

The Slesingers bought the rights from author AA Milne more than 70 years ago.

Winnie the Pooh
Winnie the Pooh has become a lucrative prize
Since then, Disney has built a commercial empire around the character, and the family alleges the firm has failed to pay $35m in royalties on unreported software and video sales of $3bn.

The case has become more complicated this year, after Disney helped one of AA Milne's descendants counter-sue in an attempt to reclaim the rights.

The Slesinger family insist that the descendant has no claim, but is plainly keen to get the case moving.

Mr Cochran is most famous for successfully defending OJ Simpson, but has also worked in a string of high-profile cases, including representing Michael Jackson, and the descendants of victims of the US slave trade.

Milne fights on over Pooh rights
29 Oct 03  |  Entertainment
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02 Apr 03  |  Entertainment
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26 Nov 01  |  Entertainment
Disney sued over Pooh royalties
16 Aug 01  |  Business
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21 Jul 99  |  Education

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