British trio the Sugababes have launched a legal battle against former singer Mutya Buena over the rights to the group's name after she applied for ownership of the trademark last year. Buena formed the trio with Keisha Buchanan and Siobhan Donaghy in 1998, but she quit the band in 2005, four years after Donaghy walked out on the group.
Buchanan, the last remaining founding member, was kicked out by replacements Heidi Range and Amelle Berrabah last year and Jade Ewen was hired to take her place. Buena then made a legal challenge for the Sugababes name in November when she applied to the European Trademarks Authority, based on the fact none of the original members remained. Her request was registered by officials but has yet to be approved.
And now the current Sugababes line-up is fighting to keep the title - the trio has filed a notice of opposition, backed by bosses at their record label, Island. An Island Records rep says, "Contractually we are entitled to the use of the name Sugababes in connection with records and films. We are just protecting that right."
The current Sugababes line-up - Range, Berrabah and Ewen - is currently recording the group's eighth studio album.