Busted members lose claim for £10m in unpaid royalties

Two original members of the boy band Busted have lost their claim that they were owed about £10m in unpaid royalties in a High Court case costing £1.7m.

Both Ki McPhail and Owen Doyle, who were criticised by the judge as "unreliable" witnesses, had their assets frozen before further hearings to decide who will bear the cost of the 19-day trial.

The pair claimed they wrote songs with James Bourne and Matt Willis – including the hits "Year 3000" and "What I Go To School For" – when the group formed in 2001. They told the judge they were forced to sign away their rights after "threats" and "undue pressure" when they were sacked from the band later that year.

But Mr Justice Morgan said in his ruling: "Ki was not a reliable and convincing witness. He quite plainly exaggerated and distorted the real event."

The judge said that Doyle "was not a reliable witness either. He manifested a high degree of confusion and a failure to grasp the detail in relation to many of the significant events."

Lawyers for the claimants said they might appeal.

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