Michael Jackson: 'To know him is to love him'

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The Independent US

The defence phase of Michael Jackson's trial on child molestation charges has got off to a strong start, following testimony from two boys - now grown men - who said they shared his bed innocently over a period of years, and from their mothers, who described the singer in glowing terms as a man in whom they could place absolute confidence.

The defence phase of Michael Jackson's trial on child molestation charges has got off to a strong start, following testimony from two boys - now grown men - who said they shared his bed innocently over a period of years, and from their mothers, who described the singer in glowing terms as a man in whom they could place absolute confidence.

"He has a very pure love of children," said Joy Robson, denying prosecution allegations that her son Wade had once showered naked with Jackson. "To know him is to love him and to trust him." Wade himself, now a dance instructor and choreographer, flatly denied anything untoward happening during the years he spent as a frequent guest at Neverland - almost always in Jackson's bed.

Similar denials came from Brett Barnes, who accompanied Jackson on tours to Europe and South America, and his mother, Marie Lisbeth Barnes. "You just feel when you can trust someone and not trust someone, and I have complete trust in him," Mrs Barnes said. Her son was equally adamant in his denials of any molestation.

At the very least, Jackson's lawyers can congratulate themselves on introducing an element of reasonable doubt into the prosecution's contention that Jackson molested Wade Robson and other boys over a period of 15 years or more. Jackson himself denies all wrongdoing.

One of the few points scored by the prosecution came when they showed Mr Robson pictures of homosexual pornography in Jackson's possession. "Would you be concerned about a person who possesses books like that crawling in bed with a 10-year-old boy?" prosecutor Ronald Zonen asked. "Yes, I guess so," Mr Robson answered.

The case continues.

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