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MJ Trial

Day 63 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 31-05-'05

Michael Jackson and the 12-member jury that will decide the outcome of his trial were not in court as attorneys argued over what instructions can be provided to the jurors for when they start deliberations.

Judge Rodney Melville agreed with prosecutors (and against defence objections) that the four alcohol charges against Michael can be reduced to "lesser included offences" if the jury wish, meaning they could convict Michael of being guilty of a misdemeanour of giving liquor to a minor instead of providing alcohol to a minor to facilitate the felony of child molestation. Although this would not be a felony charge that could encounter four years in prison for each, if found guilty a small prison term or fine can still be handed down.

The judge also made a ruling concerning the Martin Bashir documentary 'Living With Michael Jackson'. "I'm willing to give ... the instruction, 'The video of 'Living With Michael Jackson' is not offered for the truth of what is said except for certain identified passages,"' Melville said. "'The rest is considered hearsay and you can only consider that it aired and its impact if any on Mr. Jackson."' The passages that were referred to were not specified in court according to the Associated Press.

Melville agreed to tell jurors that they could outright dismiss testimony from a witness whom they believe has wilfully made false claims during their testimony. The written instructions will be allowed to be taken into deliberations by each member of the jury, and will specify (amongst other things) that the "prior bad acts" evidence brought in by prosecutors are not charges Michael is currently facing and will read, "Evidence has been introduced for the purpose of showing the defendant committed crimes other than those for which he is on trial. This evidence, if believed, may be considered by you only for the limited purpose of deciding if it tends to show a characteristic plan or scheme to commit acts."

The jury will also be instructed that the fact Michael did not testify himself should not be used against him.

Michael is due back in court tomorrow with attorneys resuming their arguments concerning the jury instructions.

Source: MJ Star / Billie Jean


Michael Jackson Birthday Celebrations. 29-05-'05

There are 2 Michael Jackson Birthday Celebrations on August 28th.

MJ News Online presents The Unbreakable Party:

A celebration of Michael Jackson's 47th birthday. To be held on the August 28th 2005, in London (England), it will showcase some of the world's best Michael Jackson impersonators and tribute artists.

TLC & Stars-Events presents the Michael Jackson Birthday Party:

Fantastic music of Michael and Jackson family, superb performances of several MJ look-a-likes, 1 lottery ticket with a lot of M.J./Jackson prizes that you can win! And off course there will be merchandise stands with a lot of interesting items.
At the same time is there a party on August 28th 2005, in the “Leidse Volkshuis” Apothekersdijk 33A, 2312 DD Leiden, Holland.

Source: Billie Jean


Joseph Jackson
Joseph Jackson

Jackson's Dad Begs Michael To Eat And Sleep. 27-05-'05

Michael Jackson's father is begging the pop superstar to take care of his health after publicly agreeing with fans he's looking thin and frail.

Joseph Jackson sat down for an exclusive chat with US news show Entertainment Tonight and used his interview to plead with his son to eat properly and get more sleep.

The Jackson family patriarch admits he's very concerned about his son after standing by his side for the past 12 weeks as the singer attended daily hearings in his child molestation trial in Santa Maria, California.

The worried father says, "Even his fans are saying, 'Michael should eat.' They want him to eat. I want him to eat too.

"I'm trying to tell him to stay strong and eat so he can stay strong to get through this, but when you got a problem like he has... He has lost a lot of weight... and he don't get enough sleep at night."

Joseph Jackson also used the TV chat to appeal to his son's defence team to let the pop star defend himself in court.

He adds, "He wants to defend himself. Michael wants to get up on that stand... I don't blame him. Let him defend himself. Let him tell it."

Source: MJFC / Billie Jean


Steve Robel and Craig Bonner
Testimonies of Steve Robel and Craig Bonner.

Day 62 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 27-05-'05

Investigators' first look at the boy who accused Michael Jackson of molesting him is also the last one juries will be left with as they decide whether he is credible enough to convict the pop star.

With evidence that included phone records and adult magazines and testimony from more than 130 witnesses including Macaulay Culkin, Chris Tucker and Jay Leno, the case may come down to whether jurors think the boy is believable.

Testimony ended Friday after prosecutors showed the panel the boy's videotaped interview with sheriff's detectives in July 2003.

"Bottom line, if they don't believe the accuser, the jurors end up voting not guilty," said Jim Hammer, a trial analyst and former San Francisco prosecutor.

"It was a smart move by prosecutors, who were able to get the alleged victim in the case back before jurors without subjecting him to cross examination. And the defense apparently felt there was no point in bringing the young man back onto the stand; that the risks were too great after a strong defense case,'' says CBS News Legal Analyst Andrew Cohen.

Jackson, 46, is charged with molesting the then-13-year-old boy in February or March 2003, giving him wine and conspiring to hold his family captive to get them to rebut the damaging documentary, 'Living With Michael Jackson'.

Jury deliberations could come as soon as next week.

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 62 (27-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 62 of the process of the century.

The interview and other tapes played throughout the trial gave jurors several images of the boy.

He appears downcast, weak and ghostly in the September 2000 tape, a home movie in which Jackson takes the boy's hand to help him onto a train, holds an umbrella over him as his brother pushes him in a wheelchair and sits with him next to a lake.

In later appearances he is fresh-faced and confident. In the documentary footage — and in a February 2003 video made by Jackson's associates to rebut the documentary in which Jackson said he allowed children to sleep in his bed — the boy defends the singer and praises him for helping him beat cancer.

A different side of his personality appears on the tape jurors saw Friday.

In a low, quiet voice, looking at the floor and pausing often, the boy tells sheriff's investigators that Jackson acted inappropriately with him almost from the beginning — starting with his first trip to Neverland in 2000.

His account is similar to the one he gave on the witness stand in March, though a few details were missing or somewhat inconsistent.

In his first visit to Jackson's home, he said on the interview tape, Jackson showed him and his brother naked women on the Internet. But he did not tell investigators about two crude statements that he attributed to Jackson during his testimony.

He also said on the tape, as he did on the stand, that Jackson began fondling him one night in 2003 after saying he wanted to show him how to masturbate. The boy also told investigators that Jackson kept fondling him after he asked him to stop.

The boy did not tell the detectives something that he later said both Jackson and his grandmother told him: that men who don't masturbate sometimes commit rape.

The boy said on the tape that Jackson molested him no more than five times; in his testimony he said he remembered two times, but that there may have been more. His brother testified that he saw Jackson fondling the boy twice.

After the police interview was played Friday, giving jurors their last look at the boy, the courtroom was silent. When the lights came up, jurors were looking down, appearing somber.

"This ending is really the best thing the prosecution could have hoped for," said Craig Smith, a Santa Barbara College of Law professor and former prosecutor.

Source: CBS News / Billie Jean


MJ TrialDay 61 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 26-05-'05

Judge Rodney Melville allowed prosecutors to enter an edited taped police interview with Gavin Arvizo into evidence today, but denied a late motion to enter photographs of Michael Jackson's genitalia that were taken during a search on Neverland Valley Ranch in 1993.

"The court will allow the playing of the tape," the judge said. "It's awful long. It seems to me that playing a half hour of it would be enough." Defence attorneys suggested they might call the accuser back to the stand, as well as his mother, the family's former civil attorney Larry Feldman and psychologist Stan Katz.

Melville denied the motion to admit the 1993 photographs into evidence after defence attorney Robert Sanger argued prosecutors were simply trying to shock the jury with it being the end of the trial, therefore being prejudicial, according to the Associated Press.

The motions were heard in the middle of what is the prosecution's rebuttal case, which continued with another of the family's ex-civil attorneys William Dickerman returning to the stand. He testified that he worked for the Arvizo's to try and get back passports, visas and possessions put in storage by Michael's employees. Lead defence attorney Thomas Mesereau challenged the witness during cross-examination, "You and your client were trying to set up Mr. Jackson for a lawsuit." The judge admonished Dickerman after he replied, "If we want to get to the truth Mr. Mesereau, instead of playing games, we can have a reasonable trial where the facts come out." Melville stated, "Counsel you are not an advocate here, you are a witness."

Jurors were expected to start deliberations next week, however it is unknown how long witnesses will be re-questioned for during the rebuttal cases.

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 61 (26-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 61 of the process of the century.

Source: MJNI / Billie Jean


Michael JacksonJackson Will Not Testify At Child Molestation Trial. 25-05-'05

Michael Jackson's lawyers will not call the troubled star to testify at his child molestation trial, because they're confident they will win the case without probing the singer about his private life.

Jackson's lawyer Thomas Mesereau hinted to jurors the 'Bad' star would take to the stand to deny allegations he molested a teenage cancer victim, by repeatedly using the phrase, "Michael will tell you..." in early March.

But yesterday (May 24) Mesereau announced actor Chris Tucker - who began his testimony on Tuesday - will be the last of the 50 defence witnesses called to the Santa Maria, California trial.

The 46-year-old star refused to comment on the development or the fact the defence team now expects to rest its case next week (May 30).

ABC News legal analyst Dana Cole says, "Why prolong the trial? Let's just leave well enough alone and call it a day and get out of Dodge."

Source: Contact Music / Billie Jean


Best Of Michael Jackson & The Jackson 5 CD Album Cover'Best Of Michael Jackson & The Jackson 5' CD Album Is Released. 25-05-'05

The 'Best Of Michael Jackson & The Jackson 5' album is released in Japan by Universal Music.

The CD features 24 hits (which 1 bonus track), great classic tracks of Motown era of Michael's solo work and the Jackson 5 era!

Track list:

1. Michael Jackson - Ben - 2:46
2. Jackson 5 - Never Can Say Goodbye - 2:59
3. Michael Jackson - Got To Be There - 3:23
4. Jackson 5 - I Want You Back - 2:55
5. Jackson 5 - ABC - 2:54
6. Jackson 5 - The Love You Save - 3:00
7. Jackson 5 - I'll Be There - 3:58
8. Michael Jackson - I Wanna Be Where You Are - 3:00
9. Michael Jackson - What Goes Around Comes Around - 3:32
10. Jackson 5 - It's Great To Be Here - 3:10
11. Jackson 5 - Mama's Pearl - 3:07
12. Jackson 5 - Sugar Daddy - 2:32
13. Jackson 5 - Darling Dear - 2:37
14. Jackson 5 - I Can Only Give Your Love - 2:34
15. Michael Jackson - Rockin' Robin - 2:32
16. Jackson 5 - My Little Baby - 3:05
17. Michael Jackson - Girl Don't Take Your Love From Me - 3:47
18. Jackson 5 - Love Song - 3:24
19. Jackson 5 - Lookin' Through the Windows - 3:44
20. Michael Jackson - Farewell My Summer Love - 4:24
21. Michael Jackson - One Day In Your Life - 4:15
22. Jackson 5 - Dancing Machine - 2:42
23. Michael Jackson - We're Almost There - 3:46
24. Jackson 5 - Santa Claus Is Comin' To Town (Bonus Track) - 2:24

Record label: Universal Music
Series number: UICZ-1154
Printed: Japan
Guide price: 22 €

Order the cd album here at HMV.

Source: HMV / Billie Jean


Michael's 4 AlbumsClassic Michael Albums Are Re-Released On CD. 25-05-'05

After being out of print individually in any format for many years, four of the phenomenal Michael Jackson's original albums are reissued on CD by Motown in Japan.

The four albums are:

'Got To Be There': MJ's 1972 solo debut LP features the title track and 'Rockin' Robin' and the Top 20 'I Wanna Be Where You Are.'
'Ben': His second straight solo smash, featuring the title track, his first solo Pop No 1 'Music And Me': A ballad-heavy album from a maturing Michael, this 1973 disc includes the Top 20 R&B 'With A Child's Heart.' The 'Ben' album is the first Japan CD press with inserts and obi.
'Music & Me': MJ's 1974 solo debut LP features the title track and the Stevie Wonder cover 'With a Child's Heart' and 'Doggin' Around' was a limited-release single in Holland.
'Forever, Michael': From 1975, Michael's final solo album for Motown, featuring the Top 10 R&B dance classics 'Just A Little Bit Of You' and 'We're Almost There.'

Record label: Motown
Series numbers UICY-3863/UICY-3864/UICY-3865/UICY-3866
Printed: Japan
Guide price: 15 € (the peace)

Order the four cd albums here at Billboard Japan.

Source: Billboard Japan / Billie Jean


Michael JacksonJackson 'To Quit America When Trial Ends'. 25-05-'05

Michael Jackson will quit America and move to Europe or Africa as soon as his child molestation trial ends in a bid to rescue his music career, according to Fox News correspondent Roger Friedman.

Michael has reportedly sold his Neverland Ranch already, for $37 million to pay off his ever-increasing legal costs.

And Friedman says that if the 46-year-old wins the court case, he will escape the bad publicity and memories of the trial by fleeing from the US as early as next week (May 30) when the defence team expects to rest its case.

Friedman says, "Those who are already in the know tell me that Jackson is already planning an almost instant move to Europe or Africa.

"Whether it's temporary or permanent is up in the air, but the pop star knows he has to take a breather from the US if he wants to rehabilitate his career. But where will he go in Europe? My money is on Paris or London, where he has legions of fans.

"Some have said Africa is being mentioned a lot. His brother Jermaine spends a lot of time in Saudi Arabia, but Michael doesn't like the hot sun and doesn't much care for Jermaine."

Source: Contact Music / Billie Jean


Chris Tucker
Comedian Chris Tucker's cross examination.

Day 60 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 25-05-'05

"Your honour, the defence rests," were the words of lead defence attorney Thomas Mesereau as the case of Michael Jackson's defence came to its conclusion.

Before the defence finished, comedian Chris Tucker resumed his testimony from Tuesday (May 24). Tucker testified that the Arvizo family requested he arrange the flight to Miami in February 2003, which the family claimed during their testimony they were forced to do. "Everybody was excited to go down there and see Michael," the witness said. Tucker said he eventually warned Michael that the family were acting suspiciously after the Mother kept interrupting him, "I pulled Michael into a room and said, 'You need to watch out. Be careful."

The witness stated he became suspicious after Janet Arvizo became very emotional at the prospect of receiving a truck from him to get around, "I got a little suspicious. I thought I was doing too much (by giving the vehicle), so I said no." She was said to have been crying and shaken, "Like she was possessed." Tucker also said he was suspicious of the family regarding him as a brother and Michael as a Father.

Tucker described events concerning a trip he invited the family on to Las Vegas where he was filming a movie. The plan was for them to stay a few days, but they ended up staying for a few weeks at his expense according to the Santa Maria Times. The accuser and his brother were said to have been misbehaving on set, "Everybody had to say, 'Chris, we have a job here to do.'" The witness said.

The accuser was described as cunning and unusually sophisticated by the comedian, who stated at one point "Gavin is cunning and smart. If he doesn't want to do something, he doesn't do it." The comment was stricken from the record. Tucker went on, "He was really smart and he was cunning at times, and his brother Star was definitely cunning." The witness said he was quite naïve when giving the family gifts because he felt sorry for Gavin Arvizo because of his cancer, "He would always say, 'Chris, let me have this ... I'm not feeling too good,'" Tucker said according to the Associated Press.

When asked by Mesereau, Tucker stated he is still good friends with Michael but hasn't talked to any of the Arvizo family for a year. He recalled a short phone conversation he had with Gavin Arvizo after he hadn't spoken with him for a while in which he only got to say hello before Janet Arvizo shouted for her son to get off the phone.

Once the defence rested its case, the prosecution immediately started their rebuttal case with former Neverland Valley Ranch manager Jesus Salas returning to the stand. He testified about the frequency in which the Accuser and his brother would sleep in Michael's bedroom as well as the amount he saw Michael drink around children.

Tomorrow is expected to see the prosecution's rebuttal case continue with former Neverland employee Charli Michaels testifying, as well as Blanca Francia return to the stand. Prosecutors also want to call former lead defence attorney Mark Geragos back to the stand.

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 60 (25-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 60 of the process of the century.

Source: MJFC / Billie Jean


Jay Leno and Chris Tucker
Comedians Jay Leno and Chris Tucker took the stand.

Day 59 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 24-05-'05

Comedians Jay Leno and Chris Tucker took the stand in court to testify for the defence.

Jay Leno testified about phone conversations he had with Gavin Arvizo. The witness said Arvizo sounded, "a little scripted" on the phone or in answer messages that were left. Leno stated he found it off that a child liked a comic in his 50's and that Arvizo talked like an adult. When answering questions from lead defence attorney Thomas Mesereau the witness said that although he was never outright asked for money by the Accuser it did sound like the family were looking, "It sounded suspicious when a young person got overly effusive," Leno said. "It just didn't click with me."

Leno also testified that during one conversation there was a female voice in the background that sounded like she was coaching Arvizo, but the witness could not identify whom it was according to the Associated Press. The defence contend it was Janet Arvizo using her cancer-stricken son as a means of financial gain. Before leaving the stand, Leno made the courtroom laugh when he promoted his Tonight Show, "We have Renee Zellweger on the show tonight."

Paralegal Mary Holzer also took the stand. Holzer worked at the law firm that dealt with the Arvizo's civil lawsuit against store chain JC Penney, the Arvizo's won a $152,000 settlement. The witness testified that Janet Arvizo had told her that her injuries that the lawsuit claimed were inflicted by store security guards were actually inflicted by her then husband on the night of the incident. When Holzer told Arvizo she could not lie, her life was threatened, "(Arvizo) told me that (her husband's) brother ... is in the Mexican mafia ... and that she knows where I live and they would come and kill me and my 9-year-old daughter." The witness stated she never reported the lie because she was scared.

Holzer described another incident when she accompanied Arvizo to the doctor's, "She threw herself down on the ground, starting kicking and screaming, carrying on that the doctors were the devil and the nurse was the devil and they were all out to get her," the witness said. Holzer also stated Arvizo enrolled her children in acting classes so that they could become better liars according to the Santa Maria Times. "She said she wanted them to become good actors so she could tell them what to say," the witness said.

Actor Chris Tucker was the day's final witness, and Mesereau announced he was the defence's final witness of their case. The witness testified that he met Michael Jackson through the Accuser, as they were both in touch with him during his cancer treatment. Tucker said he gave the Arvizo's $1,500 when Gavin Arvizo had told him that a fundraiser in his benefit made no money.

The defence questioned several witnesses yesterday, including the nine-year-old granddaughter of late actor Malron Brando. Prudence Brando testified that Arvizo children behaved badly while at Neverland Valley Ranch while her mother labelled Janet Arvizo as untrustworthy.

Tucker is expected to continue his testimony tomorrow before the defence rest their case. District Attorney Tom Sneddon is expected to then start his rebuttal, which he claims should be finished by Thursday (May 26).

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 59 (24-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 59 of the process of the century.

Source: MJ Star / Billie Jean


Motown Remixed Vol.1 CD Album Cover'Motown Remixed Vol. 1' Is Released. 24-05-'05

'Motown Remixed Vol.1' cd album is today released in Japan through Motown/Universal Records.

Several hip hop and dance producers, including: Z-Trip, DJ Jazzy Jeff, The Randy Watson Experience, Salaam Remi, Groove Boutique (aka DJ Rafe Gomez and David Baron), and Easy Mo Bee, took hit records by The Jackson 5, The Temptations, The Supremes, and others, and re-imagined them in new styles.

The Jackson 5's 'ABC', for example, is re-imagined by Salaam Remi as a crunk song, Smokey Robinson's 'Quiet Storm' is presented by Groove Boutique as a lush, chilled out jazzy jam, and Tranzition takes The Supremes' up-tempo 'My World is Empty Without You' and transforms it into a ballad.

The iTunes Music Store version has several additional remixes in the album. Furthermore, the UK, European and Australian releases each have a few remixes that were not included on the US edition and are marked with an asterisk.

Motown songs, from 'I Want You Back' to 'My World Is Empty Without You', from 'Let's Get It On' to 'Mary Jane'.

There are 2 remixes of The Jackson 5 on the cd album: 'I Want You Back' (Z-Trip Remix) and 'ABC' (Salaam Remi Krunk-A-Delic Party Mix).

Record label: Motown/Universal Records
Series number: B00096S3TU
Printed: USA
Guide price: 12 €

On the website www.motownremixed.com you can listen to all the tracks.

Order here the cd album here at Amazon.

Source: Motown Remixed / Billie Jean


MJ TrialDay 58 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 23-05-'05

Jurors heard from a Neverland Valley Ranch maid today as she testified about an alarm that sounds each time someone enters Michael Jackson's bedroom suite. An accountant also testified about financial records of the Arvizo family.

At the beginning of the trial, prosecution witness Star Arvizo testified he witnessed Michael molesting his brother after sneaking into the bedroom unannounced. However, the defence contend an alarm installed for Michael's protection would have alerted him that someone was entering the suite. Neverland maid Maria Gomez took the stand and told jurors how a test conducted on the alarm this year had shown it is as loud now as it has ever been.

Prosecutors claimed the alarm was louder now than it would have been when Star Arvizo witnessed what he says he did, but Gomez testified that the volume has not changed for years according to the Associated Press. The witness also appeared in a videotape shown by the defence of an alarm testing, the audio cleary showed the alarm could be heard in the upstairs section of the suite.

Another witness to take the stand was forensic accountant Mike Radakovich, who testified about financial records concerning the Arvizo family. The witness testified that the family received $152,000 in a civil lawsuit against store chain JC Penney, and that $32,308 of that was deposited into the account of the accuser's mother, Janet Arvizo. Radakovich then testified that $29,000 was withdrawn from the account in a cashier's cheque to a Hollywood Ford car dealership, according to the Santa Maria Times.

The witness also testified how the Arvizo family spent $7,000 in one week shopping and dining temselves, all at Michael's expense, and in a week they claim they were being held captive by Michael's employees. For one two day period the spending amounted to $4,800 by the family, who were staying at a San Fernando Valley hotel, on luggage and items from several clothing stores.

The witness also stated Arvizo deposited welfare cheques into her then boyfriend's account that were then withdrawn to pay her rent. Radakovich stated that $760 cheques were deposited monthly into the account of Major Jay Jackson (no relation to Michael) who is now her husband.

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 58 (23-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 58 of the process of the century.

When asked questions about the welfare cheques by defence attorney Robert Sanger, another witness, Mercy Manriquez, stated in front of the jury that Janet Arvizo had committed welfare fraud. Arvizo pleaded the Fifth Amendment before testifying previously to not incriminate herself, however Judge Melville allowed the defence to ask the accountant questions as well as to use it in their final arguments. Manriquez works for the Los Angeles County Department of Public Social Services, and testified that she was the intake worker who dealt with the Mother's application for assistance in November 2001. Arvizo stated in the application she had no other source of income, despite only ten days earlier winning the financial settlement from JC Penney. Arvizo filed another application in October 2002 in which she stated her situation had not changed.

An editor of the Mid-Valley News in El Monte took the stand to testify about an article that appeared in her publication in 2000 about Gavin Arvizo's cancer. Connie Keenan said she felt "duped" by Janet Arvizo after she found out the family were covered medically with insurance and that the money raised through the article was used for every day expenses, however she did acknowledge under cross-examination by District Attorney Tom Sneddon that the article never stated specifically where the donations would go. The witness also said that the article stated the family needed $12,000 for chemotherapy treatment when it was actually only $1,200, Arvizo stated in her previous testimony that it was a mistake, but the witness said she was never approached to correct it, "I had some bad feelings about the whole incident and the whole story," Keenan said.

Janet Arvizo's ex-sister-in-law Marian Arvizo also testified. She told the court how she learned about Gavin Arvizo's illness through a report on the local news, so she started blood drives to find more blood of the accuser's type. Instead of appreciating the effort, Arvizo demanded more according to the witness, "She told me that she didn't need my (expletive) blood, that she needed money."

Tomorrow is expected to see comedian Jay Leno take the stand to testify about a phone conversation he had with Gavin Arvizo in which it was his belief the Mother was in the background coaching her son to ask for money.

Source: MJ Star / Billie Jean


HIStory - Past, Present And Future, Book I (2CD Set) CD Album CoverJackson Said To Defend Self On 'HIStory'. 22-05-'05

A gag order bars Michael Jackson from speaking out about his legal troubles, and the defense has not said if he will testify during his molestation trial. But Jackson may have offered his best defense on an album released a decade ago.

'HIStory' came out in June 1995, soon after the singer paid millions to settle a 1993 molestation allegation. The current case stems from alleged acts in 2003. The two-disc set was billed as a representation of Jackson's "Past, Present, And Future," with one disc offering classics like 'Billie Jean' and another presenting new songs about the singer's troubles.

"I've often thought that if you really want to understand Michael Jackson, listen to 'HIStory'," said J. Randy Taraborrelli, a CBS News analyst and author of the biography 'Michael Jackson: The Magic and the Madness'. "He doesn't express himself totally in a one-on-one interview," Taraborrelli said. "He's best in his songs." Jackson's spokeswoman, Raymone K. Bain, confirmed that many of the songs on 'HIStory' address what the pop star was going through at the time. It seems several could have been written in response to Jackson's current problems.

On the sweet-sounding 'Childhood', he pleads, "People say I'm not OK, 'cause I love such elementary things/it's been my fate to compensate, for the childhood I've never known. ... before you judge me, try hard to love me/The painful youth I've had." In interviews -- including some played for jurors during the trial -- Jackson has given a similar explanation for turning his Neverland Ranch into a children's fantasy land and spending time with youngsters. He said he is trying to recapture a youth lost to the music business. On another song, "Money," Jackson rails against people who will "lie for it."

The cornerstone argument of his defense is that his accuser's family fabricated their claims to try to win money from him. The most obvious reference to Jackson's legal problems is 'D.S.', in which he rails against someone named in written lyrics as "Dom Sheldon" -- though he seems to pronounce the name as Tom Sneddon, the lead prosecutor in the current case.

Sneddon tried to charge Jackson in 1993, but the case collapsed when the boy refused to cooperate after the out-of-court settlement. In the song 'Tabloid Junkie', the singer objects to unfair media coverage, and on 'Scream', a duet with sister Janet Jackson, he complains that he is "tired of injustice, tired of the schemes."

Taraborrelli believes the song that best reflects Jackson's feelings is 'Stranger In Moscow', an ethereal and stirring description of a man wounded by a "swift and sudden fall from grace" walking in the shadow of the Kremlin. "How does it feel when you're alone and you're cold inside?" Jackson sings. "Like a stranger in Moscow."

Jackson has said in interviews -- including one played for jurors -- that he used to walk alone at night looking for new friends, even at the peak of his musical popularity. Many jurors may not have heard the album. Though some have expressed admiration for Jackson's music -- one alternate even said during jury selection he can "moonwalk" -- Jackson's most popular material came out in the 1980's.

Prosecutor Ron Zonen asked several prospective panelists if they could name any of Jackson's songs in the last five years. None could. The reviews of 'HIStory' were mixed. Rolling Stone called the new songs an "exhilarating, misconceived, often heartbreaking package." But the work has held up in the decade since its release, said music journalist Steven Ivory, who interviewed Jackson several times in the 1970's. "It was supposed to be celebrating this man's pinnacle of success at that time, but it was also reflecting where he was, which was coming out of a child molestation allegation," Ivory said.

Source: Newsday / Billie Jean


Neverland RanchJackson Sells Neverland. 22-05-'05

Michael has sold his Neverland Ranch for $37 million to pay off his ever-increasing legal costs, writes British newspaper News Of The World.

Michael will reportedly hand over the keys to the 2,700 acre estate to an anonymous buyer on 13 July, the date he anticipates his child molestation trial will end.

Jackson, who originally paid $3.7 million for the sprawling ranch outside Santa Barbara, California in 1988, is currently on trial accused of abusing Gavin Arvizo there.

An insider tells the publication, "Michael has always said that after the sheriffs raided his bedroom he felt his personal space had been invaded and tainted, and that he would never return there."

Jackson, 46, is accused of molesting 13-year-old Arvizo in 2003, plying him with wine and conspiring to hold the boy's family captive. The star denies all the charges.

Source: Contact Music / Billie Jean


Mark Geragos
Former lead defence attorney Mark Geragos took the stand.

Day 57 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 20-05-'05

Prosecutors indicated to Judge Rodney Melville in court on Friday that the case could be nearing its end early next week, a claim the defence did not deny. "We're approaching the end of trial," Senior Deputy District Attorney Ron Zonen said. "The defence has indicated they may be resting as early as next Tuesday (May 24)."

The statement came on a day in which former lead defence attorney Mark Geragos returned to the stand after testifying on May 13th. The judge and prosecutors were confused on that occasion when Geragos refused to answer a question because he hadn't signed a complete waiver of attorney-client privilege, which current lead defence attorney Thomas Mesereau failed to make clear to the court and which Melville is considering sanctions for the attorney according to the Santa Maria Times.

When Geragos took the stand, during cross-examination by Zonen, he described how he asked his private investigator to "Find out who (the Arvizo's are) meeting with and what they're doing." In earlier testimony the attorney said he became "gravely concerned" about the family following the PR backlash concerning 'Living with Michael Jackson', fearing they would try to "shake (Michael Jackson) down." Zonen continued his routine of quick fire questioning of defence witnesses but did not appear to faze Geragos resulting on one occasion with testimony going off-topic. During questioning concerning claims that the attorney's private investigator Brad Miller had paid the Arvizo's rent for a few months the prosecutor asked, "Would Mr. Miller be willing to pay my next month's mortgage?" To which Geragos quipped, "How big is your house?"

Before court ended the judge ruled that un-indicted alleged co-conspirator Vinnie Amen could not testify under immunity for the defence. Amen was granted immunity by the Prosecution, but was not used as a prosecution witness after what was said during his interview actually favoured the defence's case according to defence attorney Robert Sanger. An audiotape of Amen's interview with authorities was going to be played in court by the defence, however Melville denied the request.

With the case apparently coming to an end, next week is expected to see its final witnesses, which should include comedian Jay Leno and actor Chris Tucker.

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 57 (20-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 57 of the process of the century.

Source: MJNI / Billie Jean


Larry King
Talk show host Larry King appeared in court.

Day 56 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 19-05-'05

Talk show host Larry King appeared in court and testified outside the presence of jurors before Judge Rodney Melville ruled his testimony inadmissible. The ex-girlfriend of actor Chris Tucker then took the stand.

King was brought in by the Ddefence to testify about a conversation he had with civil attorney Larry Feldman when he was representing the Arvizo family. Feldman was the same attorney who reached a financial settlement for Jordan Chandler after the 1993 accusations. "(Feldman) thought the (Mother) in this case was a wacko," King said. "He just thought she was in it for the money." The witness could not remember the time of the conversation, although he remembered it took place in a Beverly Hills deli according to the Santa Maria Times. Publisher Michael Viner was also at the deli when that conversation took place and testified to similar claims. The judge concluded that the testimony provided by King and Viner wasn't enough to impeach Feldman's previous testimony and barred them from testifying in front of jurors.

Azja Pryor, a Hollywood casting assistant and ex-girlfriend of Chris Tucker, testified that during her conversations with the Accuser's Mother in early March 2003 Janet Arvizo complained that un-indicted alleged co-conspirators Dieter Weisner and Ronald Konitzer were keeping her family away from Michael Jackson. "I asked, 'Does Michael know anything about this?' Pryor testified, 'They won't let us around him because they know the children tug at his heart strings,'" she said. Prosecutors allege that Michael abused Gavin Arvizo between February 20th and March 12th of 2003, Pryor's testimony suggests the family couldn't even speak to Michael during that time period.

When asked by lead defence attorney Thomas Mesereau if Janet Arvizo ever discussed "escaping" from Neverland Valley Ranch, Pryor smiled and said she had not according to the Associated Press. "Why are you smiling?" asked Mesereau. "It's Neverland," said the witness. "I don't know who would ever want to escape Neverland."

Pryor did speak with affection for the Arvizo children, especially Davellin Arvizo, but admitted the boys "were a little rough." The witness said she once gave the family $600 as a Christmas gift but she was never asked for money. She also testified she did not know about the $152,000 settlement the family received in a civil lawsuit against store chain JC Penney and said she was told the broken arm that the Accuser had had occurred during a baseball game, and not at the hands of mall security guards as the lawsuit claimed.

Tomorrow is expected to see former lead defence attorney Mark Geragos resume his testimony from last week after prior engagements would not allow for him to testify earlier in the week.

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 56 (19-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 56 of the process of the century.

Source: MJFC / Billie Jean


Rijo Jackson
Michael Jackson's 12-year-old cousin, Rijo Jackson, took the stand.

Day 55 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 18-05-'05

Michael Jackson's 12-year-old cousin, Rijo Jackson, took the stand today to tell the court about an incident where Gavin Arvizo and his younger brother masturbated in the same room as him. The defence intended to show that the accuser engaged in sexual activity on his own.

The incident was said to have taken place in early 2003. Rijo Jackson said that he was in the same room as the accuser and his brother when they started watching naked women on the television and started to fondle themselves under their bed sheets. When they suggested he do the same, the witness refused, "I said I didn't want to 'cause it was nasty." Jackson would have been 10-years-old at the time.

When cross-examining the witness, Senior Deputy District Attorney Ron Zonen asked if he had ever told Michael about what the boys were watching on TV, "He didn't believe it. He thought they were cool and they wouldn't do that." He never told his cousin about the masturbation either, "I didn't wanna like tell him 'cause I was scared," Rijo Jackson testified.

The witness also said he witnessed the boys taking wine that was delivered to Michael's bedroom according to the Associated Press. He testified that chef's assistant Angel Vivanco delivered the wine to the downstairs section of the bedroom and then the boys took it upstairs, while Michael was in the bathroom. The witness testified when he next saw the bottle it was un-corked with some wine missing, he told Zonen that he never told his cousin as he never witnessed the boys actually drinking the wine.

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 55 (18-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 55 of the process of the century.

The Arvizo boys also stole money from Neverland employees according to Rijo Jackson. The witness testifies to witnessing two incidents in which they stole money from a chef's drawer and the office of Jesus Salas. Although he tried telling a maid about the stealing, Jackson testified he did not tell his cousin as he was away.

Also taking the stand was Michael's aunt, Michelle Jackson, who testified that she met Gavin Arvizo, who told her about the trip to Brazil according to the Santa Maria Times. The accuser apparently told her that he did not want to go, but his mother did. This corroborated testimony provided by Simone Jackson, another of Michael's cousins, who told the courtroom that the Accuser's sister had said the same thing.

Christian Robinson, the videographer who interviewed Michael's ex-wife Debbie Rowe and the Arvizo family for the rebuttal documentary to 'Living with Michael Jackson', was next on the stand. He testified that although questions were scripted, the answers were not.

Talk show host Larry King is expected in court tomorrow to testify about a conversation he had with the Arvizo's civil attorney, as Judge Rodney Melville will rule whether or not his testimony can be admitted. Also expected is actor Chris Tucker ex-girlfriend Azja Pryor, who became friendly with the Arvizo family.

Source: MJNI / Billie Jean


Motown Remixed Vol.1 CD Album Cover'Motown Remixed Vol. 1' Will Be Released. 17-05-'05

'Motown Remixed Vol.1', set for release on May 24th, re-grooves 15 of the greatest songs of Motown for a new generation. On this album, which features more than a dozen of the world's top producers/remixers, you'll hear Motown classics like you've never heard them before.

Motown songs, from 'I Want You Back' to 'My World Is Empty Without You', from 'Let's Get It On' to 'Mary Jane'.

There are 2 remixes of The Jackson 5 on the cd album: 'I Want You Back' (Z-Trip Remix) and 'ABC' (Salaam Remi Krunk-A-Delic Party Mix).

On the website www.motownremixed.com you can listen to all the tracks.

Source: Motown Remixed / Billie Jean


Irene Peters
The jury heard testimony from social worker Irene Peters.

Day 54 Of Process Against Michael Jackson. 17-05-'05

The jury heard testimony from social worker Irene Peters, who told the court that Gavin Arvizo and his family had denied any abuse or wrong doing had happened.

First however, Angel Vivanco, a former Neverland Valley Ranch chef's assistant returned to the stand to conclude his testimony from the previous day. He told the court that Davellin Arvizo (whom he had spent some time with during her stay at Neverland) had kept in touch with him via phone calls for about two weeks after the her family had left the ranch for the final time according to the Associated Press. He testified that not once in any of these phone calls did the she ever complain of being mistreated or that the family had been held against their will.

Next came Irene Peters, who has thirty years experience with the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services. She told the court that she had met with and interviewed the Arvizo family on 20th February 2003, after the broadcast of 'Living with Michael Jackson' had raised concerns.

Peters testified that she asked the accuser directly about his relationship with Michael Jackson: "I asked him if he had ever been sexually abused by Michael and he became upset. He said, 'Everybody thinks Michael Jackson sexually abused me. He never touched me.'" In reference to the Accuser, Peters said: "I asked him point-blankly if he ever slept in bed with Michael Jackson and he said no." The Accuser also told Peters that Michael "was very kind to him" and that he "treated him like a father".

During her interview with the Janet Arvizo (who remained present during each of her children's individual interviews), Peters testified that, "she denied all allegations of general neglect". Peters then said of the Mother: "I asked her about the relationship with Michael Jackson. She went on to say he was like a father to her children and she felt he was responsible for helping (the accuser) to survive his cancer, for his cancer to go into remission."

During her questioning by lead Defence Attorney Thomas Mesereau, Peters said that at no point during her interviews with the family did they ever mention that they were being held against their will. This is despite the fact that the interviews took place the day after the family filmed the rebuttal video, which the prosecution allege they were forced to make. The only thing that the mother was unhappy about was the fact that her family was used in the Bashir documentary without her consent.

When asked about the demeanour of the family during the interviews, Peters replied that they seemed "spontaneous". At the start of the interviews the family themselves actually asked Peters to watch a video (also shown to the jury) that had been made at Neverland, which shows Michael with the accuser, during the time in which he was undergoing chemotherapy, and shows a caring relationship between them.

Mesereau then asked her if it was true that her report (based on the interviews) concluded that, "the allegations of neglect and allegations of sexual abuse by Michael were unfounded". Peters confirmed that this was correct. The witness also testified that she had bumped into the Mother again on the 1st April 2003 at a burger restaurant. Arvizo told her then that Michael wanted to send the family to Brazil and that she didn't want to go.

Michael Jackson at Courthouse - Trail Day 54 (17-05-2005)
Michael Jackson leaving the Santa Barbara Superior Court in California for Trail Day 54 of the process of the century.

Under cross-examination, District Attorney Tom Sneddon tried to suggest that she should have called the police in since the case dealt with sexual abuse, however Peters replied that the police are only called in if the allegations are deemed to be true. When asked if she was aware that children who have been abused "don't always disclose on the first interview", Peters replied that she was aware of this.

The final witness of the day was a sixteen-year-old cousin of Michael, Simone Jackson. She testified that whilst playing a video game in Michael's kitchen during the early hours of the morning, she heard the accuser and his younger brother enter the room and saw them help themselves to a bottle of wine each, according to the Santa Maria Times. "I saw them take wine," she told the court. "Both of them, they each had a bottle."

The witness also testified that during a conversation that she had with the accuser's sister, she was told that the family were leaving the country. The sister claimed that she didn't want to make the move but that her mother did.

Source: MJFC / Billie Jean

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