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Posted at 01:02 PM ET, 03/05/2012

Michael Jackson songs stolen from Sony by hackers

A poster of Michael Jackson is covered with messages from fans. (Robyn Beck - AFP/GETTY IMAGES)
An undisclosed number of Michael Jackson songs, purchased by Sony as part of a multi-million dollar deal, were stolen last year.

The Sunday Times reported (original link behind paywall) that 50,000 music files, including Jackson’s entire back catalog and some unreleased tracks, were allegedly compromised by hackers last spring. The breach was discovered shortly after April 2011, according to the paper, when Sony’s PlayStation Network was hacked and personal information from millions of users was taken.

Sony confirmed to the BBC that Jackson tracks had been stolen, but declined to say how many.

In 2010, the company reportedly agreed to pay the Jackson estate between $200 million and $250 million for the King of Pop’s back catalog and previously unheard material, according to Billboard. This collection is rumored to include Jackson duets with Queen lead singer Freddie Mercury and of the Black Eyed Peas.

James Marks and James McCormick were arrested last May in connection with the Sony hacking. They appeared in court Friday where they denied the charges, according to Reuters. The men are expected to face trial in January.

By  |  01:02 PM ET, 03/05/2012

Categories:  Michael Jackson | Tags:  Michael Jackson

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