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Subject: Richard Leigh, Da Vinci rights row author dies

Written By: Philip Eno on 12/01/07 at 4:58 pm

Richard Leigh, one of two writers who unsuccessfully sued for plagiarism the publishers of the global best-seller the Da Vinci Code, has died aged 64.

US-born Leigh, who had lived in Britain for many years, had been suffering from a heart condition.

Leigh, along with Michael Baigent, claimed themes from their work The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail were plagiarised by author Dan Brown.

They lost their lengthy, high-profile case in 2006 and again later at appeal.

The High Court in London ruled in April 2006 that US writer Brown had not copied the work of the two authors. The Court of Appeal in London upheld that ruling in March 2007.

Leigh and Baigent were told to pay 85% of publisher Random House's costs of almost £1.3m.

After the verdict Leigh said: ""We lost on the letter of the law. I think we won on the spirit of the law, to that extent we feel vindicated."

Full report on BBC News Online

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