Music bosses at a little-known publishing group have won a major legal tussle against Sony over chart-topping 2010 Shakira hit Loca.

A federal judge in Manhattan has ruled in favour of Mayimba Music executives who alleged the Spanish-language single infringed on the work of Ramon Arias Vasquez, who wrote Loca con su Tiguere in the late 1990s. They own the rights to his music.

The Mayimba publishers sued Sony Corp of America and several other Sony units in 2012. Two of them were found to be liable in court on Tuesday (19Aug14), reports Reuters.

The plaintiffs argued Shakira's track was was based on a 2007 song by rapper Eduard Edwin Bello Pou, aka El Cata, which also copied Arias' music.

The judge must now determine the Mayimba Music bosses' damages.