Sheikh 'felt personally betrayed' by Jackson

An Arab sheikh who spent a fortune on a project he thought would revive Michael Jackson's career felt "a strong sense of personal betrayal" when the pop superstar walked out on the deal, a court heard today.



Sheikh Abdulla bin Hamad Al Khalifa, second son of the King of Bahrain, is now suing Jackson for £4.7 million in the High Court in London to get back what he says he spent on the star.



Bankim Thanki QC, representing the sheikh, told Mr Justice Sweeney that his client had formed a "close personal relationship" with Jackson after he invited him, his children and personal staff to stay in Bahrain in June 2005.



Mr Thanki said Jackson had signed a contract for recording albums, writing an autobiography and staging shows in which it had been agreed that 7,000,000 US dollar (£4.7 million) would be deducted from Jackson's agreed royalties to pay for the expenses.



These included, he said, a £175,000 bill for motivational guru Tony Buzan who was flown into Bahrain to work with Jackson.



The star left Bahrain in May 2006 to go to Europe and Japan.



"The last thing Sheikh Abdulla expected was that he was never coming back," Mr Thanki said.



The following month, the sheikh was asked to sign a document releasing Jackson from his obligations under the contract but refused, the lawyer added.



"My client felt a strong sense of of personal betrayal because this was someone he considered a close personal friend. The work they had done together and the plans for the future all seemed to be totally frustrated," he said.



It emerged in court on the first day of the hearing yesterday that the sheikh had sent Jackson songs he had written and had tried to record one as a charity single for the victims of Hurricane Katrina. It was never released.



Jackson insists there was no valid agreement and that the sheikh's case is based on "mistake, misrepresentation and undue influence".

In his pleaded defence, Jackson says the payments he received were "gifts" and that no project was ever finalised.



At the start of a court hearing in London set to last for up to 12 days, Mr Justice Sweeney heard that an application would be made for Jackson to give evidence via video link from Los Angeles.



Sheikh Abdulla is the Governor of the Southern Governate of Bahrain and head of the country's Public Commission for the Protection of Marine Resources, Environment and Wildlife.



He is also the founder of the 2 Seas Group, an entertainment and record production label.



The sheikh is seeking repayment of the £4.7 million and/or damages for breach of contract, plus interest.

Arts and Entertainment

Filming to begin on two new series due to be aired on Dave from next year

TV

Arts and Entertainment
Kit Harington plays MI5 agent Will Holloway in Spooks: The Greater Good

'You can't count on anyone making it out alive'film
Arts and Entertainment
War veteran and father of Peter and Laust Thoger Jensen played by Lars Mikkelson

TVBBC hopes latest Danish import will spell success

Arts and Entertainment
Carey Mulligan in Far From The Madding Crowd
FilmCarey Mulligan’s Bathsheba would fit in better in The Hunger Games
Arts and Entertainment
Pandas-on-heat: Mary Ramsden's contribution is intended to evoke the compound the beasts smear around their habitat
Iart'm Here But You've Gone exhibition has invited artists to produce perfumes
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

    Bread from heaven

    Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
    Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

    How 'the Axe' helped Labour

    UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
    Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

    The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

    A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    Welcome to the world of Megagames

    300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
    'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

    Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

    Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

    The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
    Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

    Vince Cable exclusive interview

    Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
    Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

    Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

    Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
    Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

    Everyone is talking about The Trews

    Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
    Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

    It's time for my close-up

    Meet the man who films great whites for a living
    Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

    Homeless people keep mobile phones

    A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
    'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

    'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

    British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
    Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

    Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

    Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
    14 best kids' hoodies

    14 best kids' hoodies

    Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
    Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

    The acceptable face of the Emirates

    Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk