The estate of Swedish journalist and author Stieg Larsson, seen in 1988, was shared between his brother and father. ((Jan Collsioo/Scanpix Sweden/Associated Press))

The dispute over Millennium trilogy author Stieg Larsson's legacy continues, with his brother defending the family's stewardship of the writer's estate.

Joakim Larsson spoke out on Swedish television, saying that he and his father — who inherited the author's estate — intend to donate to charity most of the 250 million kronor (approximately $45 million Cdn) they've earned so far from the monumentally successful book series.

He rejected recent claims by Larsson's longtime partner, Eva Gabrielsson, that the family was commercializing the author's legacy to seek maximum profits.

"There are no T-shirts or coffee mugs," he told Swedish television in a broadcast on Friday. "We've paid our lawyers to stop that. We've even received a request about an operetta from Taiwan, but we've said no to that."

Gabrielsson, who was Larsson's common-law partner and companion for more than 30 years, has been embroiled in an estate dispute with his family. Because the couple was not married, had no children and Larsson had no will, his estate was automatically inherited by his family upon his death in 2004, according to Swedish law.


Larsson's longtime partner, Eva Gabrielsson, published a memoir earlier this month about their relationship and his famed Millennium crime series. ((Joel Saget/AFP/Getty Images))

Larsson's trilogy comprises The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest. Eva Gabrielsson said she aided Larsson in writing the trio of tales about investigative journalist Mikael Blomkvist and his tough-as-nails computer hacker partner Lisbeth Salander.

The books have sold approximately 50 million copies worldwide and spawned a trio of successful Swedish film adaptations. An English-language version — starring Daniel Craig and relative newcomer Rooney Mara — is also slated for release.

Gabrielsson has admitted to being in possession of an unfinished, 200-page manuscript for a fourth book in the series. While she has said she could finish the novel, she has refused to hand it over to Larsson's family, who currently hold the rights to the series.

In her bid for control of the estate, she has turned down his family's offer of $2.75 million as well as a seat on the board that manages rights to her partner's work.

Gabrielsson released a memoir about her life with Larsson in France, Sweden and Norway earlier this month.

Joakim Larsson said that his family plans to give earnings from the Millennium series books and film adaptations to causes that his brother supported, including Expo, the anti-racism magazine for which he worked.


The blockbuster Millennium Trilogy of books has also spawned film adaptations, including a trio of acclaimed Swedish films starring Noomi Rapace as computer hacker and investigator Lisbeth Salander. ((Knut Koivisto/Alliance Films))

With files from The Associated Press