Michael Jackson's 1995 hit You are Not Alone was plagiarized from a song written by Belgian twins in 1993, a Belgian court has ruled.
The court transferred rights to the song to the twin composer brothers, Eddy and Danny Van Passel, according to a report on Agence France Presse.
The judgment is only applicable in Belgium and so the Van Passels will have difficulty collecting royalties.
You Are Not Alone debuted at number 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart.
The song was written by U.S. singer-songwriter Robert Kelly and released in August 1995 by Jackson from his album HIStory: Past, Present and Future: Book I.
The Van Passels say the work is identical to their song If We Can Start All Over.
They have been fighting for 12 years to gain recognition for their work and have the backing of Belgian rights society, SABAM, which confirmed in 1995 that the songs are the same.
The Van Passels have published songs in more than 100 countries, and had a No. 1 hit in Asia with Dying Inside to Hold You.