Faded pop phenomenon the Spice Girls are staring at a bill for £1 million after an appeals court found them guilty of misrepresentation when they inked a sponsorship deal with Italian scooter company Aprilia World Service.

The singers took the group to court after it terminated payments, claiming they were owed £100,000 in fees, £112,250 in royalties connected with the Sonic Spice-branded scooter, plus £6,000 for scooters allegedly guaranteed to them.

At issue is the departure from the band of Geri Halliwell – aka Ginger Spice – soon after the deal was signed, which prompted Aprilia to take action. The remaining four, currently pursuing solo projects with limited success, claimed Geri had told them of her desire to leave a month after the contract was agreed in March 1998.

However, the appeals court upheld an earlier ruling, dismissing such claims and awarding Aprilia damages plus costs, totalling around £1m. The judges ruled that Posh, Baby, Scary and Sporty knew Halliwell was going to leave before the sponsorship deal was signed.

News source: MediaGuardian.co.uk