HIStory vs EVANstory: The 1993 allegations Part 3
The aftermath and the on-going criminal investigation
A Santa Barbara Grand Jury began hearing testimonies in the context of the criminal investigation in early February 1994. Law enforcement sources told the Los Angeles Times that neither Michael Jackson nor Jordan Chandler had been called to testify. There was speculation at the time that while Gil Garcetti would not file charges without having any evidence to support his case, the Santa Barbara D.A. Tom Sneddon, who had the reputation of being aggressive, would try his best even with a weak case. Michael Cooney, an attorney who knew Sneddon well, said about the prosecutor: : ”Tom Sneddon is a very determined individual who will go further than almost anyone to prove something which he feels needs proving. Ones he decides action is worth taking, he will pursue it to the very end”. Steve R. Balash, who worked with Sneddon, the “Mad Dog”, also said about him: ”If you wanted to go to central casting to pick out a prosecutor, you’d pick Sneddon. He’s got a lot of power, and when he targets someone, it’s a battle.” Tom Sneddon has been accused of malicious prosecution, false allegations, personal vendettas and abuse of power by many other people.
It was rumoured that if the Santa Barbara Grand Jury found the evidence insufficient to indict Michael Jackson, the Los Angeles D.A. “would drop the political hot potato without career repercussions”. Gil Garcetti’s predecessor, Ira Reiner, had to leave office under the stigmatization of the McMartin Preschool case (the false child abuse allegations that Dr. Stanley Katz had diagnosed). Gil Garcetti said in 2004 that he primarily reserved the grand jury for cases with uncooperative witnesses or for difficult or high-profile cases in which he wanted to test the evidence before bringing charges.
USA Today wrote “Prosecutors in L.A. and S.B. counties are scrambling to salvage what’s left of their criminal investigations into sex abuse allegations against the pop music star”. Gil Garcetti was reportedly trying to change the law so minors who alleged they were abused could be forced to testify. The newspaper characterized their actions as desperate and referred to Blanca Francia’s concerns about investigators’ misconduct with her son who had repeatedly denied any abuse. It was quite obvious that the investigators were trying to create “victims” out of nowhere.
In the meantime Jackson’s lawyers asked for the photos of Michael’s body search, but Judge James M. Slater refused and said they were safely stored in a local bank. So safely stored that Geraldo Rivera had seen them, and there was a call made to the National Enquirer by someone who was trying to sell them the photos for $3 million. The rumours that the tabloids had the photos had been circulating since January 1994, and Jackson’s fans in Europe had started a campaign by gathering signatures so the photos would not be published.
In mid-February 1994 PBS aired the documentary “Frontline: Tabloid truth, the Michael Jackson Scandal”. The PBS correspondent, Richard Ben Cramer, followed the tabloid frenzy from behind the scenes when the scandal broke. He provided a great insight on how tabloids obstructed justice by interviewing con artists who were paid for their stories. It pointed out that the real news in Jackson’s case was poisoned by Hard Copy, A Current Affair, National Enquirer, and the blood thirsty London tabloids. These dubious characters who were motivated by money even made non-tabloid reporters lose their credibility. The New York Times revealed that Diane Sawyer went to Manila to interview the Quindoy couple. The newspaper negatively criticized her decision and they said that she started connecting herself to tabloids, and that was very dangerous for her reputation. It also came out that people who worked for tabloids were hired later for big networks. Checkbook journalism displayed by the tabloids was characterized as “disservice to truth and disservice to justice”, and its dubious impact on mainstream media was stressed. Diane Dimond was mocked by the non-tabloid press, and was characterized as a “tabloid princess” who made a name for herself by exploiting Michael Jackson. The Dayton Daily News wrote that “the trend toward tabloidization of news in America may be irreversible”. Hard Copy was severely criticized for the salacious coverage and the paid stories.
The sad reality is that Tom Sneddon’s §1108 evidence (enacted in 1995) based on hearsay “witnesses” came from tabloids like Hard Copy & National Enquirer, and they didn’t have any effect on any kind of jury that they were presented to (two Grand Juries, one civil trial, one criminal trial, and the police interviews in 1993 where they blamed the tabloids for their fictional stories), and the prosecutor could not use them to file charges. Laurie Levenson, a former federal prosecutor and professor at Loyola University School of Law, told News Press on 2004 regarding Sneddon’s action “The problem for the prosecutor is he’s always going with a one-victim case. The one witness you want to hear from in the prior case is the alleged victim. Part of the problem is that if you only bring in the other witnesses, it’s going to look like window dressing. The defense will say they don’t have the evidence so they’re trying to distract you with peripheral witnesses who have their own agenda”.
Most observers said that Judge Melville should not allow testimony from third parties who were making accusations about people who never accused Jackson and could not speak for themselves. Tom Mesereau, from morning session transcripts, on March 28, 2005, said:
Nowhere can we find they are just willy-nilly bringing in third-party witnesses to say they saw something without bringing the alleged victim in. Yet that is exactly what 99 percent of the evidence they plan to bring in is. And I submit the potential for prejudice there is overwhelming. They probably couldn’t win a civil case if they were pursuing a civil case based on nothing but third parties.
Who are their main witnesses? Their main witnesses sued Mr. Jackson in the mid ’90s, and for the first time Mr. Jackson decided, “I’m tired of settling these stupid cases, I’m actually going to defend this one.”
It resulted in the longest civil trial in the history of this courthouse. And the Court, I’m sure, knows a lot more about that case than I do. At numerous times during that six-month trial, the trial Judge made findings that the plaintiffs were lying, not being candid, changing their stories, even leaving the bench on a couple of occasions. And when the dust settled, the jury returned a verdict for Mr. Jackson, awarded Mr. Jackson damages, because the plaintiffs had stole from him.
The Judge then awarded not only costs, but legal fees, and in the end Mr. Jackson obtained a judgment for over a million dollars against these lying plaintiffs
They want the Court to allow these lying plaintiffs to come in now again and try and testify to improper acts, when there is no alleged victim they intend to call. That’s just plain wrong. And if they suggest it wouldn’t be time-consuming to litigate that issue, all the Court has to do is look at the six-month trial and its length to know that’s not true, because they sold stories to tabloids, they were caught lying, and they had a big judgment against them.
Now, the fourth alleged victim is Jason Francia. Jason Francia and his mother were interviewed by the sheriffs and a deposition of the mother was taken.
Money was paid to settle that case, again because Mr. Jackson didn’t want the press, didn’t want his family going through it, and wanted to pursue his music career.
There never was a criminal prosecution, even though the alleged victim was interviewed by the Los Angeles District Attorney and the Santa Barbara District Attorney together. And after their interview with Jason Francia – which was so wishy-washy about what happened, they never decided to pursue a criminal case, because there wasn’t one.
We have that taped interview – the mother, in a civil deposition in the Chandler litigation, began by saying she saw something and ended by saying she saw nothing. And indeed, stories were sold to tabloids, and money was paid to settle. He appears to be the only alleged victim they want to bring in.
Macaulay Culkin’s father also criticized Sneddon’s desperation and his weak case against the singer, as well as his decision not to even interview his son about the alleged molestation that several former Neverland employees claimed to have witnessed. Legal analysts also argued that it was wrong on the law and unfair to the defendant, violating his Sixth Amendment right. They added that they were proven untrustworthy by the prosecutor himself, who never filed charges for them, and there was never a conviction. They stressed that it was a blatant Confrontation Clause violation. All the imaginary alleged “victims” testified for Jackson’s defense, and Sneddon was left with his hearsay, having to explain why he called his tabloid “witnesses” and not the alleged “victims”. At the end the jury didn’t believe the “witnesses”, and Jackson was acquitted despite the official tainting.
Susan Drake, one of the 2005 trial jurors said to Larry King on June 23, 2005, after the exonerating verdict:
KING: Was there a chance you would have convicted anything guilty, Susan, on one of the minor counts?
DRAKE: Nothing. I went in there with a courage to convict a celebrity. Because I really believe in doing what is right. And witness after witness I was more convinced of the innocence, because of the motivations of financial gain and revenge, it was just amazing the way it was laid out.
During the month of April 1994, two Grand Juries (one from Santa Barbara, and one from Los Angeles) continued to hear testimonies, and were presented with the prosecutors outcomes of the criminal investigation. Some of the people who testified were Katherine Jackson, Miko Brando, Norma Staikos, Blanca Francia, Bob Jones, Anthony Pellicano, the rest of the “tell-all” tabloid witnesses, Janet Jackson’s ex-husband, and others that were not named in the press. While the two Grand Juries were in process, a source from the police investigation told Daily Variety that there was nothing that could incriminate Jackson. In the meantime it was reported that the prosecutors continued to meet with Jordan Chandler.
Both Grand Juries decided there was no case against Michael Jackson, and were disbanded in 1994 without issuing an indictment for the singer. One juror told CNN in May 1994 that he didn’t hear any damaging testimony and the only thing Michael Jackson could be found guilty of was bad judgement. The same was repeated in the Santa Barbara News Press in March 2004 when the paper interviewed members of the 1994 Santa Barbara Grand Jury who said that there were never shown enough evidence to issue an indictment. Michael Jackson’s 2005 lead defense attorney said on November 29, 2005, in his speech at Harvard University: “Sneddon had convened a grand jury in the early 90’s to try and get an indictment and he failed. And I have since spoken to someone who was on that grand jury quite recently from Los Angeles. She was on a Los Angeles grand jury that was convened at the same time. And they had real problems with these accusations. And the real problems were the sense that people were trying to get money out of Michael Jackson by generating these charges”.
On May 9 and 10, 1994, tabloid show Hard Copy invited as guests the paid tell all ex-employees, in an effort to exploit the story. This time excerpts from Evan Chandler’s diary were read. It was more than clear that Evan Chandler was still trying to cash in and he was breaching the terms of the settlement. Mr. Chandler confirms the $20 million and extortion and admits that when Jackson didn’t pay he then sent Jordan to Dr. Abrams, knowing that he was obligated by law to inform the police. The New York Amsterdam News criticized the tabloid for not pointing Mr. Chandler’s manipulations and accused the show for lack of fairness and objectivity.
On August 16, 1994, Jordan’s stepfather David Schwartz decided that he was left out of the game and it was time for him to earn some money from the singer. Mr. Schwartz, who was experiencing financial troubles for quite some time, and had even asked from June Chandler to persuade Michael Jackson to lend him millions of dollars (prior to the allegations), filed a lawsuit against Jackson for monetary compensation because he and his 6-year-old daughter Lily were “very traumatized by the allegations”. June Chandler, in her 2005 testimony, had a hard time recalling that everyone around her was desperate to profit from Michael Jackson. The motivation of money was so obvious that they could do nothing to hide it. David Schwartz hired Danny Davis as a lawyer. Danny Davis successfully represented the lead defendant in the McMartin Preschool case (in which false child abuse allegations where diagnosed by Dr. Katz). What a coincidence. Howard Weitzman’s comment was “this lawsuit is frivolous and another attempt to take advantage of Mr. Jackson’s notoriety and fame in order to try to extract money from him”. David Schwartz was the one who tried to alert Michael Jackson about Evan Chandler’s plan in 1993, and had accused Chandler of extortion.
On September 21, 1994 an official statement was made by Tom Sneddon and Gil Garcetti regarding the status of the investigation. They said they interviewed over 400 people, including children that denied any inappropriate contact, and 30 of these people testified in 2 grand juries. In their joint statement they admitted they had no evidence against Michael Jackson and therefore they could not file charges. Their only witness informed them on July 6, 1994 that he didn’t want to testify, and they quoted him “I am sorry, I do not want to and I will not testify” (Jordan Chandler would repeat the same thing in 2004 to Ron Zonen and the FBI agent). They said that if he decided to testify they would go forward with the case. They also said that the tabloid witnesses were interviewed as well, but they were not credible because they were paid for their stories. These people never said they witnessed molestation anyway.
After the settlement, the prosecutors continued to meet with Jordan and it was not until July 1994 that he informed them of his refusal to testify. Since the investigation had begun they had plenty of time to file charges if they had any incriminating evidence.
Gil Garcetti gracefully admitted that the 18-month investigation didn’t lead to anything incriminating. Tom Sneddon was too embarrassed to admit that the witch hunt, with the 6 search warrants, 2 grand juries and hundreds of witnesses lead to nothing. He referred to Jordan Chandler as “primary alleged victim” but the problem is there are no primary, secondary and tertiary alleged victims. Either you have an alleged victim or you don’t. He went on to say that they discovered an alleged victim that denied any wrongdoing. How this individual became an alleged victim without admitting any wrongdoing was not explained. He also referred to another phantom alleged victim that conveniently was not in US at the time and was receiving therapy. The part where Mr. Sneddon tried to convict Michael Jackson in the court of public opinion is very confusing in its wording, and it doesn’t match with what he presented as phantom victims in his 1108 during the 2005 trial. The only one that received therapy was Jason Francia, and that was because his mother had questioned police’s techniques. He was also the one that denied any wrongdoing. On December 16, 1994 Hard Copy referred to Blanca Francia and her son asking for a settlement (thus copying the Chandlers after the police interviews and the grand jury depositions where nobody believed their story) and they used a clip of Sneddon talking about the alleged victim being on therapy. It was more than clear that Tom Sneddon mixed the story of Jason Francia to make it sound like a third alleged victim. The only person who was visited by authorities outside of the USA was Bret Barnes, who had publicly defended Jackson in 1993, and also defended him during police interviews in 1993-1994 and as a defense witness in the 2005 trial.
Tom Sneddon’s inappropriate behaviour was characterized as “a cheap shot at Michael Jackson” by USA Today, and the newspaper pointed out that the case was all about money from the very first day. While Mr. Sneddon had a hard time admitting that he spent the tax payers’ money on a witch hunt, Gil Garcetti tried to correct him after the press conference in the question and answer session with the media by saying the following: “Michael Jackson is presumed to be innocent as any citizen in this room is if they are not convicted with a crime. We are not charging Michael Jackson with a crime”.
Michael Jackson, who evidently had more class than Santa Barbara’s D.A. said the following: “I am thankful that the investigation has reached a conclusion. I continually maintained my innocence. I am grateful to all my family, friends and fans who have stood by me and also believed in my innocence. Lisa Marie and I look forward to getting on with our lives, raising a family, and will never forget the unending outpouring of love from all over the world. God Bless you”.
After the joint statement, Gil Garcetti said that it took them a long time to come to a conclusion because they “do not just willy-nilly go and charge someone after you get some initial information”. Mr. Gascon, the chief spokesman for the LAPD, said that they conducted the investigation, gave their information to the district attorneys, and made their decision. Ivy Mondy of the Department of Children’s Services, which was also investigating the case, said “we thought there would be a lot of attention given to this case because of who is involved, but when you get down to the facts of the case, you can’t always proceed”. That was an interesting remark.
In October 1994, Mary Fischer published her article “Was Michael Jackson framed? The untold story” in GQ magazine. The article was nominated for National Magazine Award. She had interviewed many people involved in the case and although we now know more about the story, her revelations were very important in 1994. She appeared on The Today Show, CNN, KCBS-TV, CBS Morning News, and Entertainment Tonight to talk about her article. She was also interviewed for PBS’ documentary on the 1993 case before the publication of her report. In her article she concludes “To some observers, the Michael Jackson story illustrates the dangerous power of accusation, against which there is often no defense—particularly when the accusations involve child sexual abuse. To others, something else is clear now—that police and prosecutors spent millions of dollars to create a case whose foundation never existed”.
When Michael Jackson was arrested in 2003 for the Arvizo case, she was a guest on Greta Van Susteren’s show on November 25, 2003 and she defended her 1994 article and said that the current case was suspiciously similar to the 1993 case with the same people involved.
In 2004 she also appeared on MSNBC, FOX, and CNN for the same reason. In June 2009, she gave permission to a blogger to reprint her article (http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread477059/pg1).
On December 16, 1994, an orchestrated effort was displayed from tabloids to keep the story on their shows. Hard Copy reported that Blanca Francia and her son were seeking a settlement from Michael Jackson. This happened after Jackson’s lawyers rejected the proposal and Blanca Francia then asked for a little boost from tabloids to pressure Jackson. The maid was after her own concept of the American dream, and decided to copy the Chandlers’ playbook. The story was also reported in late January 1995 from British tabloids and New York Daily News. Blanca Francia, who blamed Hard Copy in 1993 for editing her interview, who was paid for the story, who told the police and grand jury she never witnessed anything inappropriate, who said her son denied any molestation, and who was now trying to cash in. She filed a civil complaint, not a criminal one, and found herself a civil lawyer to copy Larry Feldman. Sony, who was about to release Jackson’s “HIStory” album, intervened to save their multi-million dollar campaign from negative publicity. The maid had carefully chosen the timing to achieve her goal and ask for money. Jackson finally agreed to a settlement, which was not an admission of guilt, and did not prevent the Francias from testifying in court and talking to the police (they had already done it 2 years ago) and he added a unique paragraph (which was not the standard language for settlement agreements) to declare his innocence, and the reason for settling the case. Francia’s lawyer ,Kris Kallman, testified in 2005, along with both Blanca and Jason Francia. Mr. Kallman said that the settlement was reached either in 1995 or 1996. From Kris Kallman’s 2005 direct examination from Tom Sneddon:
Q. BY MR. SNEDDON: Who was the individual that
12 the Complaint was directed towards?
13 A. Mr. Jackson.
14 Q. At some point in time, did you have contact
15 with individuals who were representing Mr. Jackson
16 over the proposed filing of the criminal — of the
17 civil complaint?
18 A. Yes.
19 Q. And who did you make contact with?
20 A. Initially our contacts were with Johnnie
21 Cochran and his associate, Carl Douglas.
22 Q. Do you recall approximately when it was when
23 you first made contact with Mr. — or when contact
24 was made between you and Mr. Cochran and Mr.
26 A. It was either late ‘94 or early ‘95.
27 Q. Did you, after your conversations with those
28 individuals, file the civil lawsuit? 4953
1 A. No.
2 Q. At some point in time later, were you then
3 dealing with other lawyers with regard to the
4 proposed filing of that civil lawsuit?
5 A. Yes. At some point, Mr. Jackson’s
6 representation was assumed by a lawyer named Zia
7 Modabber, and a lawyer named Howard Weitzman.
8 Q. And do you recall approximately when it was
9 that you then began contact with those particular
11 A. I believe it was in mid 1995.
12 Q. And the purpose of those contacts?
13 A. Well, the –
14 MR. MESEREAU: Objection. Vague;
16 THE COURT: Overruled.
17 You may answer.
18 THE WITNESS: The purpose of the contacts
19 was that they knew that we had a Complaint that we
20 were about to file in Santa Barbara County Superior
21 Court, and they didn’t want us to do that.
22 MR. MESEREAU: Objection. Hearsay;
24 THE COURT: The answer is stricken.
26 Q. BY MR. SNEDDON: As a result of the
27 conversations between these individuals, did you
28 pursue your lawsuit? 4954
1 A. Well, we never filed the lawsuit.
2 Q. Did you reach an agreement, a settlement
4 A. Yes, we did.
5 Q. Did you reach a settlement agreement in
6 which Jason Francia received monetary compensation
7 from Mr. Jackson?
8 A. Yes, sir.
9 Q. Did you receive — did you reach an
10 agreement in which Blanca Francia received monetary
11 compensation from Mr. Jackson?
12 A. Yes, we did.
13 Q. During the time that you were
14 representing — during the time that you had
15 prepared a Complaint ready to be filed and you were
16 in contact with attorneys representing Mr. Jackson,
17 can you give the ladies and gentlemen of the jury an
18 idea of how old Jason Francia was at that particular
19 point in time?
20 A. Well, he was about 14 years old. He’s 24
21 now, as I understand it, and we’re talking about
22 things that happened just about exactly ten years
24 Q. And in your position as a civil litigator,
25 at the time that an individual is of minority, at
26 the age of 14, how do you deal with representing a
27 person like that?
28 A. Well, a child – 4955
1 MR. MESEREAU: Objection. Vague;
2 foundation; relevance.
3 THE COURT: Overruled.
4 You may complete your answer.
5 THE WITNESS: A child, under California law,
6 under the age of 18, is not permitted to enter into
7 a contract. I suppose he or she could, but it
8 wouldn’t be enforceable. So the only way a child
9 can act legally is through a guardian ad litem. And
10 it’s normally the parent and normally the mother.
11 Q. BY MR. SNEDDON: Was that the case in this
12 particular instance?
13 A. Yes.
14 Q. Now, during the course of the time that you
15 were involved in obtaining a settlement from Mr.
16 Jackson on behalf of the Francias, did you deal
17 personally with Jason at any time?
18 A. Yeah. Sure.
19 Q. In what respect?
20 A. Well, I knew who he was, I met with him. I
21 met with he and his mom. He was a teenaged boy, and
22 a nice young man.
23 Q. Now, at some point in time was Jason
24 required to sign some kind of documents in
25 conjunction with the settlement?
26 A. Yes. When he turned 18, part of the
27 condition was that he sign a confidentiality
28 agreement. 4956
1 Q. Now, with regard to the confidentiality –
2 and to your knowledge, did he sign that?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. And with regard to the confidentiality
5 agreement, did it have a provision that required
6 notice to Mr. Jackson in the event that Jason
7 Francia talked to anybody?
8 MR. MESEREAU: Objection. Leading; move to
10 THE COURT: Overruled.
11 You may answer.
12 THE WITNESS: I believe so, yes.
13 Q. BY MR. SNEDDON: And what was the
14 requirement notice in the confidentiality agreement
15 with regard to notice to the defense?
16 A. I believe it’s five days.
17 Q. And were you at some point contacted by Mr.
18 Zonen of our department with regard to interviewing
19 your — Jason Francia?
20 A. Yes.
21 Q. And in that particular case, did you
22 indicate to Mr. Zonen that you would have to do
23 something before you could agree with that?
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. And what was that?
26 A. Well, I’d have to notify somebody on Mr.
27 Jackson’s legal staff that they wanted to talk to
28 him. 4957
1 Q. And did you do that?
2 A. Yeah. Yes. Excuse me.
3 Q. And did you then grant permission for Mr.
4 Zonen to have a conversation with your — with Jason
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. Now, were you present during the
8 conversations between Jason Francia and Mr. Zonen?
9 A. I don’t think so. I think I was there, and
10 then I think I had to go to another court or
11 something like that. I don’t remember being an
12 integral part of any of those — if there was more
13 than one, I don’t even know.
14 Q. And I’m talking about the conversations that
15 occurred after you gave notice to the defense in
16 this case, or gave notice to Mr. Jackson. To your
17 knowledge, was Mr. Cannon present?
18 A. I believe so. At least for part of it.
19 Again, I’m not certain.
20 Q. Do you remember when it was that you
21 finally — the year that you finally reached a
22 settlement agreement with Mr. Jackson?
23 A. Yes. It’s been a long time. But it was a
24 big deal. And I do remember –
25 MR. MESEREAU: Objection. Nonresponsive;
26 move to strike.
27 THE COURT: The answer is stricken.
28 Nonresponsive. 4958
1 Q. BY MR. SNEDDON: Just –
2 A. Yes.
3 Q. And what year was that, approximately?
4 A. It was either ‘95 or ‘96, I believe.
Cross examination from Tom Mesereau:
Q. Yes. Okay. Now, the prosecutor asked you
13 some questions about provisions in the settlement
14 agreement, okay? And one of the issues that was
15 carefully negotiated by the people representing Mr.
16 Jackson was that he deny any wrongdoing in that
17 agreement, right?
18 A. Again, the best evidence of that would be
19 what’s in the agreement. I don’t remember what’s in
21 Q. Okay. Well, let me — the prosecutor read
22 you a provision, asked you about it.
23 Let me ask you about this: There was
24 language in that agreement that said, “The parties
25 acknowledge that Jackson has elected to settle the
26 claims solely in view of the potential impact any
27 litigation could have in the future on his
28 reputation, earnings and potential income, and not 4968
1 because of any alleged wrongful conduct on his
2 part,” right?
3 A. If you’re asking me if that’s in the
4 document, I’ll have to take your word for it. You
5 don’t need to show it to me. It sounds pretty
6 standard to me.
7 Q. The agreement further said — excuse me, let
8 me rephrase that.
9 Both agreements, the one involving Jason and
10 the one involving Blanca, his mother, both had
11 language which said, “This agreement shall not, in
12 any manner, be construed as an admission by Jackson
13 that he has acted wrongfully with respect to
14 Francia, Blanca, or any other person, or at all, or
15 that Francia or Blanca have any rights whatsoever
16 against Jackson or Jackson’s releasees.” Sound
17 familiar to you?
18 A. It sounds like standard language in
19 virtually every release that I deal with. But, yes,
20 it does sound familiar.
21 Q. Actually, there’s a whole separate paragraph
22 entitled, “Denial of Claims by Mr. Jackson,”
24 A. Don’t know.
25 Q. Would it refresh your recollection if I show
26 you a copy?
27 A. It would.
28 MR. MESEREAU: May I approach, Your Honor? 4969
1 THE COURT: Yes.
2 THE WITNESS: It does refresh my
4 Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Okay. And do you recall
5 that language being in both agreements?
6 A. I believe so, yes, sir.
7 Q. Okay. In addition to the language that I
8 have read, there’s further language which says,
9 “Jackson specifically disclaims any liability to,
10 and denies any wrongful acts against, Francia,
11 Blanca or any other person and may continue to do so
12 publicly, to the extent reasonably necessary, to
13 respond to any inquiries in this regard.” Right?
14 A. Correct.
15 Q. It said further, “The parties acknowledge
16 that Jackson is a public figure, and that his name,
17 image and likeness have commercial value and are an
18 important element of his earning capacity.” Right?
19 A. That’s true.
20 Q. And that language was in both settlement
21 agreements, the one involving Blanca Francia and the
22 one involving Jason Francia, correct?
23 A. I don’t remember that. I will take your
24 word for it. You don’t need to refresh my
25 recollection. It sounds like it should be or would
27 Q. Now, Mr. Kallman, provisions in which a
28 settling party denies liability are fairly standard 4970
1 in settlement agreements, right?
2 A. True.
3 Q. But the language that I just read to the
4 jury is not standard language in a settlement
5 agreement, is it?
6 A. This is not a standard case, or was not.
7 And no, you’re right. These were carefully drafted
8 by a team of lawyers, and we agreed to the terms.
9 Q. And the reason those terms are different is
10 because Mr. Jackson is an unusual individual in
11 terms of his need to preserve his reputation and
12 public image so he can earn a living, right?
13 MR. SNEDDON: Calls for speculation on this.
14 It wasn’t drafted by him. No foundation.
15 MR. MESEREAU: I think it was drafted by
16 this witness.
17 THE COURT: All right. I’ll sustain a
19 MR. MESEREAU: Okay.
20 Q. When you settled these matters – and I’m
21 talking about matters involving Michael Jackson,
22 Blanca Francia, and Jason Francia – you put in
23 language involving denial of claims by Mr. Jackson
24 that was not standard language in a typical
25 settlement agreement, right?
26 MR. SNEDDON: Your Honor, I’m going to
27 object to the question as lack of foundation; that
28 he put the language in there. 4971
1 THE COURT: Well, that was the foundation I
2 was looking for.
3 So I’ll allow you to answer the question as
4 long as you understand the limitations of your
6 THE WITNESS: Well –
7 THE COURT: If you put the language in.
8 THE WITNESS: I didn’t draft that agreement.
9 THE COURT: Okay.
10 Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: Did lawyers from your
11 office draft the agreement?
12 A. No.
13 Q. Who drafted the agreement?
14 A. Somebody in Mr. Modabber’s office, the
15 Katten, Muchin, Zavis & Weitzman firm in Century
17 Q. Did you have any input into the language in
18 the agreement?
19 A. Only to review it. And if there was
20 language we found objectionable, we could strike it,
21 I suppose.
22 Q. Okay.
23 A. But they wanted that in there, and I didn’t
24 find it objectionable.
25 Q. Okay. Now, you made a statement, I believe,
26 in response to the prosecutor’s questions, that if
27 someone from law enforcement wanted to speak to your
28 client, you had to first notify representatives of 4972
1 Mr. Jackson, true?
2 A. True.
3 Q. That — really, that language is not in that
4 agreement, is it?
5 A. I don’t know.
6 Q. Then why would you say it?
7 A. Because that’s part — in one of the
8 agreements, I have to give notice to the defense
9 team. And I’ve given notice once to Mr. Sanger.
10 And then when I got subpoenaed on Friday, I gave
11 notice to Mr. Modabber down in Los Angeles.
12 Q. But the notice you’re supposed to give to
13 the defense team does not involve requests by law
14 enforcement to speak to your client, does it?
15 A. I assume that anybody from law enforcement
16 that wants to talk to my client, there was a
17 requirement to notify somebody from the defense
19 Q. Nowhere in those settlement agreements is
20 there language to that effect, is there?
21 A. I have no idea.
22 MR. SNEDDON: Object as immaterial;
24 MR. MESEREAU: The prosecutor brought it up
25 on direct, Your Honor.
26 THE COURT: The objection is overruled. And
27 the answer came in as, “I have no idea.”
28 Q. BY MR. MESEREAU: It would be against public 4973
1 policy for a civil litigator to put language in a
2 settlement agreement precluding anyone from
3 cooperating with law enforcement, wouldn’t it?
4 A. In my opinion, yes.
5 Q. Lawyers are not allowed to have language
6 like that in settlement agreements, right?
7 A. Wrong.
8 Q. Pardon me?
9 A. No. It’s a notice requirement. It’s not a
10 preclusion requirement.
The lazy “journalists” who had no idea about Michael Jackson in general, would refer to that settlement as something new that had emerged during the 2005 trial. In reality it was very old news since 1995, but their stories were poorly researched, as usual.
Michael Jackson again released a statement on September 3, 2004, to talk about the settlements:
“It is unfortunate that yet, again, I must respond to untruths and sensationalism. Years ago, I settled with certain individuals because I was concerned about my family and the media scrutiny that would have ensued if I fought the matter in court. These people wanted to exploit my concern for children by threatening to destroy what I believe in and what I do. I have been a vulnerable target for those who want money”.
His defense attorney Tom Mesereau in a press conference dated September 17, 2004 said on the same issue:
“Mr. Jackson has been a target of frivolous lawsuits throughout his career. To date, well over a thousand ridiculous lawsuits have been filed or threatened against Mr. Jackson for all kinds of reasons by those who sought to obtain money by exploiting his achievements and love for people.
None of these claims involved allegations that he ever harmed a child. However, they involved, for the most part, creative and outrageous attempts to take money from Mr. Jackson. Throughout his career, Mr. Jackson’s desire to create and help our world has been subjected to efforts to exploit, undermine and take advantage of this wonderful human being.
Mr. Jackson has been repeatedly advised by those who stood to make fortunes in his business affairs to pay money, rather than face certain false allegations. As a result, many years ago, he did pay money, rather than litigate, two false allegations that he had harmed children.
People who intended to earn millions of dollars from his record and music promotions did not want negative publicity from these lawsuits interfering with their profits.
These two false allegations must be placed in a proper perspective. Mr. Jackson has interacted with millions of children. Many millions of children around the world love Michael Jackson and never alleged that he harmed them in any way.
Those who wanted to profit from his good deeds and vulnerabilities were also threatening to destroy his ability to raise his own children and to champion the welfare, integrity, humanity and interests of children around the world. Michael Jackson occupies a world where his privacy is continually violated.
Michael Jackson now regrets making these payments. Nevertheless, these efforts to settle are now being used against him regardless of the merits or the truth behind them. These settlements were entered into with one primary condition. That condition was that Mr. Jackson never admitted any wrongdoing.
Mr. Jackson always denied doing anything wrong. Mr. Jackson had hoped to buy peace in the process. He was advised that while these sums of money appeared large, they were actually very small compared to money he could make in music. Mr. Jackson has earned well over one billion dollars in his career. Placed in this perspective, they were very small sums, indeed.
Greed begets greed. Mr. Jackson now realizes that the advice he received was wrong. He should have fought these actions to the bitter end and vindicated himself. The recent publicity about these settlements is unfair and damaging to him, his family and his dedication to the world’s children. The false charges he is facing will be battled in a court of law within our justice system. He is innocent and will be vindicated”.
On January 9, 1995, Diane Dimond, while using Victor Gutierrez as a source, reported a false story during her interview on the “Klen and Barkley show” of KABC-AM radio. She said that a videotape existed of Michael Jackson engaging in unlawful conduct with a minor. She also said that Gutierrez had met with the kid’s mother in a hotel, showed her the tape and then the mother went to LAPD to report it but the police didn’t care (!). Then she said something that was contradictory to the previous report; that the investigators were looking for the tape, and that the investigation on Jackson was reopened.
Right after the show, Jackson’s lawyer Howard Weitzman, sent the following letter to Paramount Pictures:
“I learned earlier today that Diane Dimond, one of Paramount’s Hard Copy reporters, was on KABC talk radio this morning and indicated that an untrue and defamatory story about an alleged videotape depicting Michael Jackson engaging in sexual relations with a minor was true, and that she believed such a tape existed. I understand that Ms. Dimond also made claims that the Los Angeles and/or Santa Barbara District Attorneys’ offices are reopening their criminal investigation of Mr. Jackson, based on the purported existence of this videotape. Please be informed that Ms. Dimond’s claims regarding the existence of such a videotape are untrue and defamatory, as are her claims regarding the reopening of any criminal investigation concerning Mr. Jackson.”
He also called Hard Copy to warn them that they were repeating a false report. But Hard Copy ran with the false report the same night, and so did two British tabloids. After that, Howard Weitzman said again “this week several tabloid shows and magazines, along with certain individuals, publicly alleged a videotape existed of Michael Jackson engaging in unlawful conduct. No such tapes exist”.
Sandi Gibbons, a spokeswoman for Los Angeles District Attorney’s office, issued a statement after the false tabloid report: “We have not reopened the investigation. We have heard about the alleged tape. We have not seen it and we don’t have it. Prosecutors were not involved in a search for such a video”. (Sandi Gibbons is also the one that made the statement outside the courthouse on January 25, 2011 regarding Conrad Murray’s trial on behalf of the Los Angeles district attorney).
Michael Jackson issued a statement as well:
“Enough is enough! I will no longer stand by and watch reckless members of the media try to destroy my reputation. I intend to protect myself and my family. I have instructed my attorneys to file lawsuits against those persons who continue to spread vicious lies and rumors about me in their attempts to make money, benefit their careers, sell papers or get viewers to watch their programs”.
Michael Jackson filed a $100 million lawsuit against everyone involved for slander. “The plaintiff is compelled to defend himself because Dimond, Hard Copy and the other defendants appear more concerned with their ratings than they are with the accuracy of their broadcast or the harm caused their victims”.
The D.A. of Santa Barbara, Tom Sneddon, in an unusual move for a prosecutor, involved himself in the lawsuit to save his friend Dimond. He issued a declaration for the judge that he concluded that no such tape exists but according to his “memory and belief” he came to that conclusion after Dimond’s report, and as a result she could not be held responsible for malice. Not only was this highly unusual, but Tom Sneddon had nothing to do with this because it was not in his jurisdiction. The case belonged to the Los Angeles D.A. and LAPD, and Sandi Gibbons had already refuted the tabloid reporter. Diane Dimond was saved from the lawsuit because the court ruled that no malice was proved on her part, and that she only stated her opinion ,and did not present the false story as a fact. The court probably didn’t know that this was her tactic-presenting her opinion as a fact. After that, she owed Tom Sneddon for saving her and she exercised a biased, pro-prosecution slant to her coverage, and continued to report false stories during 2003-2005, for which she was negatively criticized. Court TV, the now defunct cable news channel that hired her for the trial’s coverage, was accused of becoming a tabloid for hiring someone who had a conflict of interest. Her ex -boss at Hard Copy, Burt Kearns wrote the following in 2005: “Throughout the recent investigation and trial, Diane acted more like a prosecutor than a reporter. But she doesn’t have the smarts of a Nancy Grace. She was a clown in the circus and played the role to the hilt. Her performance in the Jackson case probably ended her hopes of ever again being taken seriously as a journalist, but it did get her a book deal”.
Gutierrez, the proven liar, told detective Gonterman that the mother was Margaret Maldonado, Jermaine Jackson’s ex-wife. Margaret Maldonado discredited Gutierrez, whom she had never even met. Gutierrez also said that L.A. district attorney Gil Garcetti had seen the tape, a lie that was refuted by the prosecutor. The investigation concluded that the tape story was a lie and Superior Court Judge Reginald Dunn ordered Victor Gutierrez to pay $2.7 million to Michael Jackson for defamation. “Jurors told us that they not only wanted to compensate Mr. Jackson and punish Victor Gutierrez, but to send a message that they are tired of tabloids lying about celebrities for money”, Jackson’s attorney Zia Modabber told the Associated Press. Much to his disappointment, Gutierrez’s lawyer had to repeat the jurors’ message as well. Gutierrez declared bankruptcy and left the country. Zia Modabber said in an interview after the verdict that people think that Michael Jackson is an easy target because he is rich, and he settled a previous civil case. She said that Michael Jackson is determined to defend himself in court and win so people’s dreams of making money out of the singer are over. She talked about people suing celebrities, which is a very common situation “Unfortunately, anybody can walk into a courthouse with a couple of hundred dollars and file a lawsuit. And if you happen to be suing Michael Jackson or any other celebrity for that matter you are going to find yourself all over TV and you can tell the whole world about your scandalous accusations and people are going to listen to you”.
Margaret Maldonado wrote in her book about Gutierrez’s scam and how she learned about it:
“I received a telephone call from a writer named Ruth Robinson. I had known Ruth for quite a while and respected her integrity. It made what she had to tell me all the more difficult to hear.
“I wanted to warn you, Margaret,” she said. “There’s a story going around that there is a videotape of Michael molesting one of your sons, and that you have the tape.”
If anyone else had said those words, I would have hung up the phone. Given the long relationship I had with Ruth, however, I gave her the courtesy of a response. I told her that it wasn’t true, of course, and that I wanted the story stopped in its tracks.
She had been in contact with someone who worked at the National Enquirer who had alerted her that a story was being written for that paper. Ruth cross-connected me with the woman, and I vehemently denied the story. Moreover, I told her that if the story ran, I would own the National Enquirer before the lawsuits I brought were finished. To its credit, the National Enquirer never ran the piece.
“Hard Copy,” however, decided it would. “Hard Copy” correspondent Diane Dimond had reported that authorities were reopening the child molestation case against Michael. She had also made the allegations on L.A. radio station KABC-AM on a morning talk show hosted by Roger Barkley and Ken Minyard. Dimond’s claims were based on the word of a freelance writer named Victor Gutierrez. The story was an outrageous lie. Not one part of it was true. I’d never met the man. There was no tape. Michael never paid me for my silence. He had never molested Jeremy. Period.”
It turned out that Gutierrez was trying to advertise his fictional book that contained pornographic fairytales of a person with a sick fantasy. Not even the tabloids were able to believe him, let alone Tom Sneddon. During a 2003 interview with a Chilean tabloid, Gutierrez went on with his hallucinations, saying that Tom Sneddon had contacted him about being a potential witness in the Arvizo case against Jackson. His lies and fantasies ended again when the tabloid received a phone call from Sneddon’s office that refuted the lie. The truth is far more disturbing because Gutierrez is not only a proven liar with a sick fantasy, but he is a self-admitted advocate of pedophilia, and he has attended these sick paraphiliacs’ conferences. The other disturbing fact is that he had admitted stalking Michael Jackson since 1986 (before the allegations), and writing a book about allegations that had not even been made. The most terrifying thing is that he met with Norma Salinas (Evan Chandler’s maid) as well as Jackson’s ex-employees, including Blanca Francia and Orietta Murdoch (Jackson’s ex secretary who didn’t say anything bad about him) before any allegations were made by Evan Chandler. The people he approached coincidentally spoke with Diane Dimond. Through Norma Salinas he met Evan Chandler, before the 1993 allegations. This was the man that NBC paid in 2004 to produce a program for the Arvizo case. The proven liar with the questionable past and suspicious involvement was used as a “source” for the tabloids. He repeated his lies for a German newspaper in 2005. The particular newspaper has been accused of promoting pedophilia. The fact that real predators, and people who support them, tried to use Jackson’s well-known known affection for children in order to normalize their sickness is abominable.
In 1995, while there was a lawsuit pending against her, Diane Dimond aired another story about a “phantom victim”. For this story she had to fly to Canada, and her producer had to pay the expenses for the show, so she had to bring a story back regardless of the result. The story was about a Canadian street kid that claimed he had been molested by Jackson, and he was able to offer a detailed story like every other liar can. The detective that questioned him said he sounded believable, and this could be another allegation on Michael Jackson. The only difference was that the police investigators in Canada actually did their job and discovered the lie. The kid was coached to lie by Rodney Allen, and he was the man that had been sending all the letters to Hard Copy making it seem as if different people were writing about being “victims”. The kid was arrested, and Rodney Allen was later arrested and convicted of pedophilia. What a coincidence!
Police investigators in the US only investigated Jackson and nobody else, and when they found nothing they didn’t bother to conduct a thorough investigation for the other side of the story as they should have done. They didn’t investigate all these people who were suspiciously connected to each other, and were popping up every time there was a story on Michael Jackson. On the other hand, the Canadian police did a better investigation without being biased against the singer, and they were able to uncover the truth.
On June 14, 1995, Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley Jackson gave an interview to Diane Sawyer of ABC’s Prime Time Live. He was asked about the 1993 case and he again declared his innocence. His album “HIStory, Past, Present & Future Book 1” was released on June 16, 1995. In that album Jackson appears very angry about the false allegations and he mocks Tom Sneddon for his malicious prosecution.
He would later mock him again in his short film Ghosts in 1997 by playing the mayor (Sneddon) who wanted the maestro (Jackson) out of his town. And Tom Sneddon would punish him with the 2003 fabricated Arvizo case and with further public lynching.
In 1995, five former Neverland employees followed the example of the “Hayvenhurst 5”. Kassim Abdool, Ralph Chacon, Adrian McManus, Sandy Domz and Melanie Bagnall filed a $16 million lawsuit against Michael Jackson (Case No. SM 89344), having Michael P. Ring as an attorney. They alleged they were harassed and threatened by security guards, and fired or forced to quit in 1994. Melanie Bagnall even alleged she was sexually harassed by a guard named Andrew Merritt (in the trial Merritt was not found liable of sexually harassing her). The judge refused Court TV’s request to televise the trial. The plaintiffs had sold their stories to the tabloids instead of going to the police. The civil case went to trial in September 1996, along with Michael Jackson’s cross-complaint. The singer’s countersuit said two of the former workers stole sketches, personal notes, hats, toys and candy from the ranch and sold some items to tabloids. Michael Ring was fined $28,350 for hiding evidence from Jackson’s lawyers during pre-trial fact-finding in March 1997. He was fined $10,000 previously for concealing facts. The trial lasted six months and the plaintiffs were sanctioned (approximately $66,ooo) for lying in court and contradicting their own testimony given the previous days. The Honorable Judge Zel Canter in one instance left the bench saying he was disgusted. On March 1, 1996, Michael Jackson was deposed for the civil case and a three minute video was released from News of the World tabloid in 2009. On March 18, 1997, the jury rejected the wrongful termination lawsuit and awarded Jackson $60,000 in damages. The plaintiffs were also ordered to pay a $1.4 million judgement in attorney fees and court costs to Michael Jackson.
“Today a jury in Santa Maria, California, sided with Michael Jackson and found that five former employees at his Neverland Ranch were not wrongfully terminated. In what was a complete win for the singer, the jury even awarded Jackson $60,000 in a countersuit that charged some of those employees stole items from the estate. The singer’s attorneys filed a countersuit, saying the five quit voluntarily and were not harassed. It also claimed two of the former workers–the maid and a bodyguard–stole sketches, personal notes, hats, toys and candy from the ranch, selling some items to tabloid newspapers. The jury of 10 women and two men agreed with Jackson. They ruled Tuesday there was no evidence to support the allegations brought against Jackson or the six aides mentioned in the lawsuit by his former employees. Jurors also decided that items were stolen and awarded Jackson the 60 grand. “We’re happy to be finally and fully vindicated,” said Jackson attorney Steve Cochrane”.
At least 2 of the employees declared bankruptcy, and when they testified in the 2005 trial, they admitted that their attorney advised them to sell salacious stories to tabloids, by using a media broker, so they can pay their legal expenses. Maid Adrian McManus admitted that she knew nothing about Jackson’s sex life with Presley but nevertheless signed contracts to sell fictional stories. Howard Weitzman said after the ruling: “Michael Jackson is thankful for the court’s ruling, he has consistently maintained that he has not engaged in wrongful conduct with any minors. The stories told by these guards on various tabloid shows, for which they were paid, were false”.
Matt Taibbi, referring to these people being called by the prosecution in the 2005 trial, summed it up for Rolling Stone on June 30, 2005:
“The first month or so of the trial featured perhaps the most compromised collection of prosecution witnesses ever assembled in an American criminal case — almost to a man a group of convicted liars, paid gossip hawkers or worse. The early witnesses against Jackson included a bodyguard who missed court because he was in custody facing charges stemming from a series of armed robberies, including holding up a Jack in the Box at gunpoint; a former Neverland maid who’d stolen a sketch Jackson had made of Elvis Presley and sold it to the tabloids for thirty grand; another former employee who’d lost a wrongful-termination suit against Jackson and had to pay part of a $1.4 million settlement as a result; a housekeeper whose son claims he was molested sold stories about Jackson to Hard Copy; and a Neverland chef whose off-duty hobbies included a porn site called Virtual Sin that featured “hours of live sex.”
J. Randy Taraborelli, who was a CBS news analyst during the 2005 trial, said that he had interviewed many of these Neverland employees but didn’t quote them in his book, because they had financial motives to lie: “If these people did not have this baggage and if their stories ended with ‘And then I called the police,’ my reaction would be ‘Oh my God’. But if you really saw these things, a normal person would call the police; you don’t call the National Enquirer.”
These people were exposed for the second time when they testified in the 2005 trial and, the jurors didn’t believe them either. They also heard that other jurors in 1997 found them to be a fraud.
In 1996, another former employee, Jerome Johnson, decided to copy the “Hayvenhurst 5” and the “Neverland 5”. The bodyguard alleged he was unjustly fired in April 1995. His lawsuit was thrown out of the court by Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge David Horowitz on May 13, 1997.
On May 7, 1996, Evan Chandler proved again it was all about money. He sued Michael Jackson, his wife Lisa Marie, ABC, Sony, Diane Sawyer, Howard Stern and 300 John Does, including Mary Fischer for her 1994 GQ article (it was reported at the time that she was deposed and that she revealed her sources). He said Jackson breached the settlement’s confidentiality and the others helped him and he asked for $60 million. He also asked the court’s permission to sing about the 1993 allegations by releasing an album called “EVANstory”! Evan Chandler, with that ridiculous request, actually admitted it was always his story, and his allegations. And why would he relate to songs with lyrics like “somebody’s out, somebody’s out to use me, they really wanna use me, they falsely accused me” and “you’ll do anything for money”? Did he falsely accuse Michael Jackson for money?
USA Today wrote “father, who accused singer of molesting son and is now suing again, ought to get a life”. Evan Chandler forgot that Michael Jackson declared his innocence inside the settlement document that he happily signed, and his declaration of innocence was also mentioned twice in the joint statement of Larry Feldman and Johnnie Cochran after the settlement.
The three arbitrators of the settlement document (retired Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Bonnie Martin, retired state Supreme Court Justice Edward Panelli, and retired Fourth District Court of Appeal Justice John K. Trotter) determined that there was not a breach of the settlement agreement “because the complained-of activities involved Jackson’s own public image, his music and his new album, not the plaintiffs”. They also said that Jackson could not be deemed by the settlement agreement to be barred for proclaiming his innocence in a public forum such as a TV interview: “In the present case, the arbitrators’ finding of no wrongful conduct based on their interpretation of the agreement did not conflict with any explicit and mandatory term of the agreement”. Evan Chandler’s lawsuit was thrown out of court.
Tom Sneddon and Gil Garcetti changed the law regarding child molestation allegations so an individual could be indicted with no evidence, based only on the claims of the alleged victim. The prosecutors would also be allowed to bring hearsay witnesses for these cases even though the defendant had no convictions about the alleged hearsay acts. Everything was ready to set up Michael Jackson in 2003.
In retrospect, we know that, like the singer said, the truth prevailed and Jackson was exonerated. Tom Sneddon was so desperate that in 1993 he even tried to prosecute Jackson under the Mann Act, a racist law, even though June Chandler was always present on the trips. The only thing Sneddon was able to prove was Jackson’s innocence. He left no stone unturned, he travelled the world, he did things beyond his jurisdiction, he changed the law, he tried to falsify evidence and create victims because he had nothing but his rage against Michael Jackson. Tom Sneddon, through his actions, proved the singer’s innocence himself.
When Sneddon tried to create victims in the 2005 trial ABC News wrote: “Mesereau told the judge that the defense would put on a “mini-trial” on each allegation that is allowed in. “You can’t stop the defense from putting on a full-blown defense and I mean just that,” the defense attorney warned”. The prosecutor did not have any victims. All he had was Jason Francia, who both he and his mother had denied allegations, and he was then forced on record to create a story for the police, and his mother was paid from tabloids and asked Jakson for money. Tom Mesereau did put a full blown defense for these fictions as well, and still won the case.
The statute of limitations on the criminal case against Michael Jackson was set to expire on August 17, 1999. But not for Tom Sneddon, who did nothing usual and normal regarding Jackson. It was extended for 2 years, and the excuse was that the singer was out of the country for his History tour so the clock stopped.
In reality, the clock would forever stop for Tom Sneddon on June 13, 2005 at 2:25 pm PDT inside a Santa Maria courthouse in which he presented (for 5 months) to a conservative, pro-prosecution jury (which consisted of non African Americans) his 1108 hearsay-nonsense about 1993, and the fabricated and laughable Arvizo case, for which he had no evidence and no case, exactly like in 1993. The 12 jurors put an end to the twelve years of Sneddon’s vendetta against Michael Jackson. And they did it live.
Evan Chandler committed suicide in November 2009, and it was reported that no one attended his funeral.
Note: The article can also be found in the blogroll