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Prince died of painkiller overdose, medical examiner says

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CHICAGO — Pop legend Prince, who was found dead in his home in a Minneapolis suburb in late April, died from an accidental overdose of painkillers, a medical examiner revealed after an autopsy.

A law-enforcement official Thursday said that tests show the 57-year-old Pop icon died of an opioid overdose.

The medical examiner gave few other details, with the sheriff’s department in Minnesota’s Carver County still investigating.

Prince was found dead at his Paisley Park estate on April 21, days after his private plane made an emergency landing that was also reportedly due to a painkiller overdose.

Federal authorities, including the Drug Enforcement Administration, have been involved in an investigation into Prince’s death.

A California doctor who treats painkiller addiction, Howard Kornfeld, had been urgently making plans to treat Prince when the artist died, the specialist’s lawyer said last month.

Dr Kornfeld’s son Andrew had arrived at Paisley Park to explain the treatment to Prince when he discovered his lifeless body and called the 911 emergency line for help.

Prince had appeared to be healthy to the public and was famous for his marathon performances in which he would play for hours or put on two shows in a night.

But the singer underwent hip surgery in 2010 and was famously private about his personal life.

Prince, whose full name was Prince Rogers Nelson, did not leave a will, and his multi-million-dollar estate including royalties from his more than 30 albums is being handled by a court.

The songwriter’s hits included Purple Rain and When Doves Cry.

Agencies

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US judge dismisses Taylor Swift ‘Shake It Off’ copyright lawsuit

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LOS ANGELES — A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit accusing singer Taylor Swift of stealing lyrics for her song ‘Shake It Off’ on Tuesday ruling the phrases in question were not sufficiently original to merit copyright protection.

Songwriters Sean Hall and Nathan Butler brought the suit last fall, arguing that the chorus of the song borrowed from their 2001 composition, ‘Playas Gon’ Play’.

In his ruling, Judge Michael W Fitzgerald held that combining the phrases, ‘Playas gonna play’ and ‘haters gonna hate,’ does not entail sufficient originality to warrant copyright protection, Variety reported.

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Swift’s 2014 song reached No 1 on the pop charts and marked her evolution from country to pop music.

Swift’s lyrics from the chorus of ‘Shake It Off’ are, ‘the players gonna play, play, play, play, play, and the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate.’

Attorneys for Swift asked US District Judge Michael Fitzgerald in January to dismiss the case.

“In order for such short phrases to be protected under the Copyright Act, they must be more creative than the lyrics at issue here,” Fitzgerald ruled, according to court papers.

The songwriters who sued Swift did not allege Swift’s song stole musical elements, the judge said, and phrases about players and haters existed in pop culture before 2001.

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