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Last Updated: Friday, 6 June 2008, 10:43 GMT 11:43 UK
Busted pair lose royalties case
Owen Doyle and Ki McPhail
The High Court case is estimated to have cost nearly 2m

Two original members of Busted have lost their 10m royalties battle.

Ki McPhail and Owen Doyle claimed they were forced to sign away their rights before being sacked from the band in October 2001.

The pair said they wrote songs with James Bourne and Matt Willis, including Year 3000 and What I Go To School For, when the group formed in 2001.

But the judge in the case, Mr Justice Morgan, dismissed their claims and criticised the evidence they gave.

He said McPhail had "convinced himself that his reconstructed version of events really happened" and Doyle "was not a reliable witness either".

Appeal considered

In a statement after winning the case, ex-Busted members James Bourne and Matt Willis said: "This was an opportunistic attempt by Doyle and McPhail to cash in on our success.

"Their claims were a complete fabrication and we are delighted that the judge has seen through this and totally dismissed them.

James Bourne, Charlie Simpson and Matt Willis
Charlie Simpson (middle) joined Busted after McPhail and Doyle left
"Our position has been completely vindicated and our achievements with Busted remain untarnished."

In his ruling, the judge left open the issue of the extent to which the original four band members contributed to four hits; What I Go To School For, Psycho Girl, Year 3000 and Sleeping With The Light On.

He said who wrote the songs was irrelevant to his decision because there had never been any contract or partnership between the four.

Both Ki McPhail and Owen Doyle have had their assets frozen before more hearings to decide who will pay for the trial, which was heard over 19 days.

They are now considering an appeal.

Busted split

McPhail and Doyle were in a band called The Termites with James Bourne and Matt Willis between January and October 2001.

They founded Busted together but McPhail and Doyle were kicked out shortly afterwards.

Busted had eight top 10 hits between 2002 and 2004 with new member Charlie Simpson but split up in 2005.

Charlie Simpson is now in Fightstar, with James Bourne in Son Of Dork and Matt Willis a solo artist.



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