Jay-Z and Timbaland have been cleared over Big Pimpin’ copyright violation, a judge ruled on October 21.
The rapper was accused of not getting permission to use a flute sample from a track written by an Egyptian composer called Baligh Hamdi in 1957.
Baligh Hamdi’s nephew and heir, Osama Ahmed Fahmy, claimed they didn’t ask to combine his uncle’s song with the lyrics of Big Pimpin’, released in 1999.
Timbaland, real name Timothy Mosley, testified that in 2011 he paid $100,000 to EMI Arabia.
The music company said they owned the rights to the song Khosara Khosara, which Timabland and Jay-Z sampled.
Both Jay-Z and Timbaland said they believed they had a valid license to sample the flute notes.
Osama Ahmed Fahmy said this deal was irrelevant and consent to change the track should have been requested.
However, Los Angeles district judge Christina Snyder dismissed the lawsuit before it went to a jury.
The flute is used throughout Big Pimpin’ that became the first major hit single for Jay-Z, whose real name is Shawn Carter.
“My client is pleased and gratified by the decision,” Jay-Z’s lawyer Andrew Bart said.
The lawyer for Osama Ahmed Fahmy, Keith Wesley, said: “We strongly disagree with the ruling and we fully intend to appeal.”
The case has taken years to get to court, with Baligh Hamdi’s nephew first filing a legal complaint in 2007.