More troubles with the Jackson clan?
Jury selection has begun in the family’s lawsuit against AEG Live, the concert promoters who organised Michael Jackson’s 50-date series at the O2 Arena. His mother, 82-year-old Katherine, claims the company is responsible for his son’s death.
She believes it was negligent in hiring Dr Conrad Murray – who was jailed in 2011 after being found guilty of involuntary manslaughter – to care for her son. Murray was brought on board to treat the singer’s chronic insomnia, but Jackson died in 2009 after he was administered an overdose of the sedative propofol. AEG, meanwhile, claims Jackson’s drug abuse began long before he came into contact with Murray. Its lawyer told CNN: “He was chosen by Michael Jackson, to be there at Michael Jackson’s behest, to be Michael Jackson’s doctor alone… Michael Jackson was the only person who could get rid of him.”
And how much are the Jacksons suing for?
They want $40bn (£26.5bn) in compensation.
You must be joking.
AEG claims the figure is “preposterous”, given that at the time of his death, the star’s career was in decline after child-molestation allegations and his self-imposed exile in the Middle East. Michael Jackson’s estate has raked in a huge amount since his death ($145m in 2012 alone), but the $40bn figure just seems ludicrous.
There are rumours that Prince (the singer, not Michael’s son) will be invited to testify. He apparently had an unpleasant experience with AEG. Judge Yvette Palazuelos has permitted testimony about Michael’s child-molestation charges after AEG claimed they could explain his medical problems. However, there will be no discussion of Katherine Jackson’s alleged kidnapping by members of her own family, which captivated the world’s news outlets last summer.