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Lawsuits alleging Mark Burnett 'The Apprentice' idea theft settled

UPI News Service, 05/23/2006 

Lawsuits filed in Los Angeles state and federal courts charging Donald Trump, NBC Universal and Mark Burnett with stealing "The Apprentice" have been settled.

Mark Bethea filed the suits claiming he and Velocity Entertainment Group first pitched the series, "C.E.O." to Mark Burnett and his partner, Carl Riggs, back in 2001, New York's Newsday reported Tuesday.

Their pitch even suggested having Trump host the show, the suit claimed.

Bethea said he registered the show with the Writers Guild of America a year before making his pitch.

Trump and NBC were part of the suit because they profited from "The Apprentice," the newspaper said.

Bethea's attorney told Newsday the suits were settled, but refused to provide any details.

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Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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