News  /  October 22, 2015  /  ,

‘Gutsy move’ ends Jay-Z ‘Big Pimpin” trial

KHIKS partner Jonathan Steinsapir was again quoted in a Daily Journal account by Ashley Cullins of the latest development in the eight-year complex litigation brought by an Egyptian plaintiff who claimed his copyright was infringed by rapper Jay-Z in the 1999 hit “Big Pimpin’.”

This time, the trial came to an abrupt and unexpected end when U.S. District Court Judge Christina A. Snyder suddenly ruled that plaintiff Osama Ahmed Fahmy lacked standing to pursue his claim, a decision that Jonathan called a “gutsy move,” adding, “I think the real odd thing here is that [Judge Snyder] decided to do it without letting the jury reach a verdict.”  Other commentators agreed, saying it’s unusual for such a lengthy court battle to be resolved on a matter of law.

Jon said that if the Ninth Circuit reverses the decision on appeal, a brand new trial before Judge Snyder would be necessary since there is no jury finding to revert to.  But he expects the appellate court to affirm if an appeal is brought, which the plaintiff’s lawyer said he is planning.

Finally, Jon had this to say:  “Jay-Z and Timbaland are American success stories and you have this guy from Egypt who’s not even the composer, he’s the heir.  Then when you look at the actual facts, they paid good money.  A $100,000 fee for that sample is a good fee.”

For additional details on the case, see the news item directly below this one, as well as the one three items down.