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Last Updated: Wednesday, 7 April, 2004, 15:46 GMT 16:46 UK
Apple case to be heard in London
The Beatles
The Beatles Apple record label was set up in 1968
A trademark battle between the Beatles' record label Apple Corps and Apple Computers should be heard in London, a judge has ruled.

The label is suing Apple Computers, claiming its iTunes online store breaches an agreement they signed.

The companies signed the peace pact in 1991 after a long-running multi-million pound trademark war between the two.

A High Court judge in London rejected an argument by the computer giant that the case should be tried in the US.

American-based Apple Computers, who had argued that the case should be tried on its home territory, was granted permission by the judge, Mr Justice Mann, to appeal against his decision.

Europe launch

Apple Corps - which is owned by Sir Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and the widows of John Lennon and George Harrison - has alleged that Apple Computers breached the 1991 pact with the introduction of iTunes.

The label claims the use by Apple Computers of the Apple name and logo to promote music products through iTunes is not allowed under the agreement.

The court heard on Wednesday that, at present, iTunes is only available to Apple users in the US, but is expected to be introduced to Europe in the near future.

The iTunes service - which allows users to pay for and download music from the internet - was launched in the US last April.

Mr Justice Mann ruled the trademark agreement was governed by English law and that a trial in the US was likely to last longer and prove more expensive than a hearing in England.

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13 Sep 03  |  Entertainment

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