May 5th, 2005 Trial Analysis: Wade Robson and Brett Barnes, Part 3 of 4
Here’s the prosecution’s response:
1 MR. SNEDDON: Be right with you, Your Honor.
2 First of all, Your Honor, let me address the
3 question that we began discussing with Mr. Sanger at
4 the beginning of his remarks.
5 I believe Mr. Sanger is wrong in the law.
6 I believe his interpretation of the law with regard
7 to what the Court’s responsibility is with regard to
8 this motion is incorrect. And while I believe
9 that — that that was a nice final argument that Mr.
10 Sanger made, unfortunately, the point that we are at
11 with regard to an 1118 motion is after a defendant
12 has been convicted. And at that point is there
13 substantial evidence to support the conviction,
14 drawing all favorable inferences in favor of the
15 jury’s verdict. That’s the standard.
16 And I cite to the Court two cases that
17 clearly set forth that standard. The first case is
18 People vs. Cuevas, C-u-e-v-a-s. It’s a 1995 case at
19 12 Cal.4 252. And then there’s a rather recent
20 case — and that’s at page 260, if I didn’t indicate
21 that, Your Honor.
22 And then there’s a more recent case which is
23 called People vs. Coffman, with a C, f-f-m-a-n, and
24 Marlo, M-a-r-l-o, which is found at 34 Cal.1 at page
26 Both of those cases make it very clear that
27 the Court is not in a position on an 1118 to make
28 credibility issues and decisions, but only to decide 9059
1 whether or not there is substantial evidence that
2 the jury believe the evidence was credible. And so
3 that’s a considerably different matter than what
4 Mr. Sanger was urging upon the Court.
5 Having that in mind, what we have to do is
6 assume, it’s a starting point, that every argument
7 that Mr. Sanger just made to you, that he would have
8 made to the jury, and the jury didn’t believe it or
9 didn’t find it persuasive, and convicted the client
10 in any case, and are there reasonable inferences in
11 what remains in the testimony and the evidence that
12 supports the reasons that the jury found against
13 everything Mr. Sanger just stood here and told you?
14 That’s where we really are in this case.
15 Having said that, I’d like to begin with a
16 little bit of analysis, first of all. And I won’t
17 spend much time on it, but I think it’s important to
18 put things in perspective in terms of the law of
19 conspiracy in light of some of the things that Mr.
20 Sanger said.
21 There are three charges here. One charge of
22 conspiracy, with an allegation of three particular
23 crimes that were involved: Extortion, false
24 imprisonment and child abduction.
25 Now, I share, in one respect, Mr. Sanger’s
26 notion that there is a double agreement and a double
27 intent that’s required to commit this crime. And I
28 do not take exception with that. However, I do take 9060
1 exception with this little bit of selective memory
2 in terms of the rest of the law on conspiracy.
3 For Mr. Jackson to be guilty of the
4 conspiracy does not require him to be the puppet at
5 the top of this, moving all the strings to the
6 little puppets below. It requires that in whatever
7 role Mr. Jackson plays in the conspiracy, that he
8 does so with the intent to commit the crimes that
9 are alleged and he does so with the intent that
10 there be a conspiracy to commit those crimes. All
11 he needs to do is share in the overall goal of the
12 conspiracy; that is, that there was an attempt to
13 conceal or an agreement. Not an attempt, but it was
14 an agreement to conceal or to falsely imprison, to
15 abduct and to extort.
16 The crime of conspiracy is unique, because
17 it does not require that the crime actually be
18 committed or accomplished. And that’s why we have a
19 whole series of overt acts. And that’s why the law
20 of conspiracy is set forth in the instructions to
21 the jury as they need not find that these crimes
22 were actually committed, only that there was an
23 agreement and an intent and a conspiracy to commit
24 these crimes, and there was at least one — one
25 overt act done towards the commission of the goals
26 of that crime.
27 Now, that’s the law of conspiracy. That’s
28 the proper perspective for which this case and this 9061
1 1118 motion needs to be heard.
2 And it’s a fundamental principle of the law
3 of conspiracy that when you have many people
4 involved in a conspiracy, that many people have
5 different roles. And I don’t think we have to
6 stretch very far if you just take the common analogy
7 sometimes that I’m sure this Court is familiar with,
8 and I don’t mean this in any disrespect to Mr.
9 Jackson, but I’m only using it as an analogy. The
10 one that comes before us more often than not, if you
11 look at those cases that this Court has seen and if
12 you look at the cases on the laws of narcotics and
13 drug cases, and when you try to get to the top of
14 the cartel, you try to move to the top of the big
15 sellers, oftentimes what you’re talking about is
16 moving through other people through that syndicate
17 that’s reflective of what the agreement is at the
18 top. It doesn’t mean that the person at the top
19 doesn’t know or share in the agreement of what the
20 people are doing down below.
21 So I think that the attempt by the defense
22 to portray Mr. Jackson as somehow being the
23 mastermind behind the conspiracy is a false attempt.
24 It is not something that we’ve alleged during the
25 entire time that we’ve tried this case to the jury
26 and the time we put this case on to the grand jury,
27 or the time that we talked with you at the 995.
28 The fact of the matter is, Mr. Jackson had a 9062
1 role. The fact of the matter is, I’m going to point
2 to you evidence that shows that he was in agreement.
3 The fact of the matter is that he was the
4 beneficiary of everything that happened in this
6 And it’s not necessary that the — that they
7 succeed in their attempts to falsely imprison, or to
8 abduct the children, or to extort something out of
9 someone, although I do believe that there is strong
10 evidence that they did succeed in certain extents in
11 all of those goals, as I will point out.
12 Now, I’d like to start, first of all, and I
13 want to say that there’s another thing that I think
14 needs to be said to the Court. There’s another
15 fundamental principle of the cases that interpret
16 the sufficiency of the evidence to sustain a
17 conviction on appeal that deals with how you prove a
19 Lord knows nobody is dumb enough to get
20 together and have five or six or seven or two or
21 three people sign a contract and say, “We’re going
22 to go out and commit these crimes, and I agree to do
23 this, and you agree to do this, and he agrees to do
24 this.” Nobody does that. I dare say that all the
25 time you’ve been on the bench, you’ve never heard of
26 a conspiracy where they had a contract and they
27 walked in here and showed you everybody agreed by
28 way of contract to do this. 9063
1 And that’s why the case law in California is
2 replete with cases that demonstrate over and over
3 and over again that the thing that you look for on
4 the substantial evidence review is, is there
5 association? Is there a way to link these people
6 together in some common purpose? Is there a motive
7 among the people? Are the goals and the acts of the
8 people reasonably calculated to accomplish what is
9 alleged to be the goals of the conspiracy?
10 And that’s where I think our starting point
11 has to be. What’s the motive in this particular
13 The motive of Mr. Jackson is clear. The
14 Bashir tape, and even Mr. Sanger, to an extent,
15 admitted it in his argument to you, the evidence of
16 one thing has been proven in this case so far. The
17 evidence is overwhelming that this was a death
18 threat to his career. He was hemorrhaging
19 financially and had been for several years. He had
20 a cash flow problem. And for some reason — as Mr.
21 Duross indicated, for some reason he couldn’t get
22 out and market himself, and didn’t, or chose not to,
23 to try to do something about this debt.
24 But the Bashir filming was the thing that
25 was just the last stroke that was going to end his
26 career if something wasn’t done immediately to turn
27 that around.
28 Now, sure, some people are going to make 9064
1 money off that. There’s no reason that some of
2 these people involved in trying to resurrect his
3 career couldn’t make money in a venture trying to
4 resurrect it. There’s no reason why these people
5 involved in this couldn’t benefit from being
6 associated with whatever was left of Mr. Jackson’s
7 career, and to the extent that they were able to
8 resurrect his career, to benefit by being on the
9 inner circle.
10 But the motive was to resurrect his career.
11 And that’s what was clear, that the only person who
12 really benefited first, foremost, was the defendant
13 in this case, Michael Joe Jackson.
14 It’s totally unrealistic to believe that at
15 this particular point in time, when his entire
16 career, his entire financial situation, his entire
17 entertainment, his entire record career is on the
18 line, that Mr. Jackson is going to sit on the
19 sidelines, allow people to come in from the outside,
20 run his career, what’s left of it, and try to
21 salvage it without knowing what’s going on.
22 And one thing that has also been proven
23 here, I believe, that there’s substantial evidence
24 that Mr. Jackson is a hands-on person. He likes to
25 get involved to some extent and to be informed, and
26 likes to make the ultimate decisions as to what’s
27 going on. He’s been described as the captain of the
28 ship. And I think that the evidence that 9065
1 circumstantially has been shown here establishes
2 that just to be the case here, and I want to start
3 to just direct the Court’s attention to some of the
4 things that I think are important.
5 First of all, I think we need to comment on
6 the associates themselves. These are people that
7 came in from different places. One’s from Canada.
8 One’s from Germany. Mr. Schaffel is local. Mr.
9 Schaffel had a history. Mr. Tyson had been a
10 friend, a close family friend, and his family has
11 been a close family friend of the defendant’s for
12 years. Absolute years.
13 Now, who is it that’s involved the most in
14 actually executing many of the overt acts in this
15 case? Frank Tyson. Frank Tyson, the defendant’s
16 closest friend, is the person who’s out there doing
17 many, many, many of these overt acts. Who’s at the
18 ranch hanging out with the defendant while all this
19 conduct is being conducted? Frank Tyson. And his
20 friend, Vinnie, that he brought in to help him do
21 all of these things.
22 You look at the phone analyses that were
23 presented to the jury in this case, and you look
24 through the key times when things are going on, like
25 when the Arvizos left on the 12th, and the video on
26 the 19th and the 20th, there are very few phone
27 calls up there of Marc Schaffel. The majority of
28 the calls are going back and forth between the 9066
1 defendant’s closest friend, Frank Tyson, his cohort
2 Vinnie Amen, Neverland Valley Ranch, and phone calls
3 to Michael Jackson’s investigator’s cell phone. And
4 we have testimony from at least, I believe, three
5 different witnesses in this case that that’s how Mr.
6 Jackson communicated with people.
7 I think it’s significant that the Court in
8 this particular case also has to put into context
9 what happened here when this whole thing got
10 started, when the bad news came out, when they
11 learned about the transcript on the 24th, when
12 Schaffel went to Dieter and Ronald and when they
13 went to Miami where the defendant was. Those people
14 were called to Miami to be with the defendant to
15 consult. “What are we going to do to solve this
17 What comes out of the product of that, Your
18 Honor? The product of that is the defendant is the
19 first one in this case who mentions “killers.” It’s
20 the defendant who is the first one in this case who
21 reaches out his hand across the nation through the
22 telephones to contact the Arvizos, who he has not
23 had a single solitary contact with for months, and
24 that last contact was simply to manipulate Gavin
25 Arvizo to participate in the Bashir tape. And he
26 hadn’t seen Gavin and the family for months and
27 months and months before that. It’s the defendant
28 who reaches out first. 9067
1 The Arvizos are minding their own time.
2 They’re getting bombarded by the media because of
3 the Bashir tape. But they’re not calling Jackson.
4 It’s Jackson calling them. It’s Michael Jackson who
5 says, “I want you to come to Miami.” It’s Michael
6 Jackson who said, “I want you to come here for a
7 press conference.”
8 Now, I think we have to stop and think about
9 something here, something that Rudy Provencio said
10 on the witness stand. Mr. Jackson said he didn’t
11 really like to do press conferences. Well, if he
12 wasn’t going to do a press conference, why did he
13 want those people in Miami? And why was there a
14 one-way ticket bought, or going to be bought, before
15 they put them on the charter jet with Chris Tucker?
16 A one-way ticket? They wanted those people out of
17 circulation. They wanted that family out of
18 circulation. And it was the defendant that reached
19 out to them and brought them to Miami, to him and to
20 the other members of the conspiracy in this case.
21 And who was it who speaks first in Miami?
22 It’s the defendant, Michael Jackson. It’s not
23 Dieter. It’s not Ronald. It’s not Marc Schaffel.
24 It’s not Frank Tyson. And it’s not Vinnie Amen.
25 And he sets the tone. Again, he says, “the
26 killers.” “And if you want to appease them, if you
27 want to appease them, the killers, do what these two
28 people who work for me tell you to do.” And he set 9068
1 the whole tone for the entire relationship and the
2 situation at that very point in time.
3 And we know for a fact, or there’s no
4 evidence to the contrary, that there were no
5 killers. There were no people to appease. It was
6 false. It was made — it was something that was
7 made up to induce a mother, who is fearful for her
8 children, who has no father figure in the family, to
9 go to somebody they thought was their friend, his
10 friend, Michael Jackson.
11 And it worked. And it worked.
12 And when they get there, what are the first
13 two things that Dieter and Ronald do? The people
14 that Janet Arvizo is instructed to rely on? The
15 people who are going to take her out of this
16 problem? The people who are going to appease the
17 killers? They don’t do anything to try to make
18 money off of Michael Jackson. What they do is, they
19 have her sign blank pieces of paper which are
20 eventually used to try to infer that she’s part of a
21 lawsuit with Michael Jackson against Bashir that she
22 says never — wasn’t on the sheet of paper when she
23 signed it in blank.
24 What else do they do when they’re in Miami?
25 They don’t try to do anything to take money from
26 Michael Jackson. They issue a press release, which
27 statement’s attributed to the family and to Janet
28 Arvizo and to Gavin Arvizo that they’ve never made. 9069
1 Who benefits by that? The defendant is the
2 only one that benefits by that.
3 When they decide to go back to California,
4 you can’t reasonably assume that Mr. Jackson didn’t
5 know that the Arvizos were going to come to the
6 ranch. It’s his ranch. It’s his charter plane. It
7 was his invitation. Why is he doing this? There
8 was no press conference. Why not take them home?
9 Why not let them go? Why take them to the ranch?
10 Again, the reason is clear. They wanted to
11 isolate these people. They wanted to keep them away
12 from the media. They wanted to convince them to do
13 a rebuttal film, all things that Mr. Jackson was
14 aware of. He was aware of it, because on the
15 conversation that Rudy Provencio tells us about, he
16 not only talks about Debbie Rowe doing the rebuttal
17 film, but he also talks about the fact that they
18 talk about the fact that the Arvizos were to be part
19 of that film. So he’s aware that that’s part of the
20 project. So why do they have to go the ranch? Why
21 do they have to stay on the ranch if that’s part of
22 the project?
23 And the defendant ‘s the one who’s involved
24 in making those kinds of decisions as to who can
25 stay at his ranch and under what circumstances and
26 who gets on his charter jet. That’s not a decision
27 made by Dieter Weizner. It’s not a decision that’s
28 made by Marc Schaffel, who’s in California. That’s 9070
1 not a decision that’s made by Ronald Konitzer. And
2 it’s certainly not a decision that would be made by
3 somebody like Frank Tyson.
4 I think the evidence is fairly clear in
5 this, by the way, this “killer” statement, that it
6 was false, was not true. We have from several
7 different witnesses in this case now that confirms
8 that. Not only through the — through Rudy
9 Provencio, but he said he heard the same thing from
10 Ian Drew. And so there’s several different sources
11 of the fact that this kind of language was used to
12 scare the Arvizos in this case.
13 Now, with regard to what happens in the next
14 12 days, whether you want to call it an escape or
15 not between lawyers, or whether you want to
16 categorize it as a situation where somebody was
17 there against their will, I don’t think we have to
18 quibble about it, because the people associated with
19 the defendant in this case clearly called it what it
20 was. It was Ronald Konitzer on the phone with Ann
21 Gabriel Kite, and it was the other people that
22 talked about the conversation that they escaped that
23 we heard about in this case. They used the word
25 Now, I don’t think any reasonable person
26 could understand the use of the word “escape” unless
27 somebody was being held against their will, unless
28 there had been a lack of an opportunity to 9071
1 voluntarily leave or — why would you use that term?
2 And just the circumstances itself that they have to
3 go to a person and speak in Spanish and then leave
4 in the middle of the night in a hurry and leave and
5 go back to Los Angeles bears that out.
6 But the thing I think that bears it out more
7 than anything else is the eventual telephone
8 conversation between Frank Tyson and Janet. And you
9 hear that conversation on the phone. And it
10 indicates several different things about the
11 continuing nature of that conspiracy.
12 It indicates — number one, it corroborates
13 the fact that there had been contact between Dieter
14 and Ronald and Janet; that those contacts had been
15 nasty, I guess is the easiest word you could use;
16 that she was upset about that; that she didn’t want
17 to be there anymore with those people there.
18 The second thing that it shows is that they
19 still wanted the rebuttal film. They still wanted
20 the Arvizos to participate in what they hoped to be
21 the FOX program at that time, because they committed
22 publicly to FOX to have the Arvizos on that program,
23 because Frank’s heard to say on that tape, “I want
24 you to say beautiful things about Michael. Come
25 back. Come back.” He says several times on that
26 tape — if you recall, Your Honor, several times he
27 alludes to the danger that they’re in. “Danger,”
28 over and over again. 9072
1 And he then tells her several times,
2 speaking on behalf of the co-conspirators, Michael
3 Jackson, “Michael misses you, Michael cares for you,
4 Michael wants you to come back.”
5 Now, it’s unreasonable to believe — now, we
6 have to understand, they leave on the 12th. This
7 conversation take place two, three days later with
8 Frank Tyson. It’s unreasonable to believe that the
9 defendant was not aware of the fact that that family
10 had left the ranch. For every day and every night
11 since that he arrived at that ranch on the 7th, he
12 had been in the presence of those children. At
13 least Gavin and Star. It’s unreasonable to believe
14 that he didn’t know for several days that they were
15 gone from the ranch, when they’d been sleeping with
16 him and playing with him, and doing whatever they
17 did the rest of the time of the day.
18 It’s just as unreasonable to believe that
19 Frank Tyson, his closest friend, would be making
20 representations to Janet that weren’t
21 representations made on behalf his closest friend,
22 Frank Tyson. Frank even lies to her to get her to
23 come back to the ranch by telling her that the
24 Germans are gone, that the problem’s over with, and,
25 “Come back.”
26 Janet makes it very clear on her behalf,
27 Your Honor, that she’s not interested in making any
28 money on this case. She makes it very clear in that 9073
1 conversation with Frank. She still cares very much
2 about Michael Jackson. She’s told on the tape, you
3 can hear it, “There are letters all over my mother’s
4 table in El Monte. We’re getting calls by the
5 press.” “If I wanted to make money,” she could have
6 made money, she said. “I didn’t want to make any
7 money off Michael Jackson.”
8 And then what happened? She goes back to
9 the ranch. And what did she see? She sees Dieter
10 and Ronald. She’s been lied to, and she leaves.
11 But who is it that says the children must stay?
12 It’s the co-conspirators, Dieter and Ronald, who are
13 there. And at that point she’s deprived of her
14 children. She says, “You can leave, but the kids
15 are staying here. They’re staying here, whether
16 they want to be here or not.”
17 The fact of the matter is, they did. She
18 couldn’t have taken them with her even if she’d
19 wanted to.
20 Now, the other thing I think we have to take
21 into consideration is that there is evidence that
22 Dieter and Ronald were at the ranch with Michael
23 Jackson during this whole period of time, not the
24 entire six weeks, but the entire time from around
25 the 8th or 9th through the 12th and then later. And
26 that Frank Tyson is there at certain critical points
27 and times and then later.
28 And to believe that the ranch is being used 9074
1 by these people without Michael Jackson knowing a
2 thing that’s going on I think is an unreasonable
3 inference to draw from the conduct of the parties,
4 from the fact that they’re seen together meeting.
5 And I think illustrative of this is the fact that —
6 and this wasn’t something that Gavin testified to on
7 direct examination. This was something Mr. Mesereau
8 brought out on cross-examination.
9 That at the very time before the video is
10 going to be filmed, Brett Ratner and Michael Jackson
11 were at the house trying to get Gavin to sign a
12 release to participate. It clearly shows that the
13 defendant is still actively involved in the project
14 to get the Arvizos on that rebuttal film, and knows
15 the significance of that in terms of the
16 preservation of his own career.
17 I don’t think there can be much doubt of the
18 fact that at that point in time, after the children
19 returned, with the case — and the state of the
20 evidence in this case, we have a witness, Barron,
21 who says there’s a sign that Gavin’s not to leave,
22 and we have logs that say that Gavin and Star, et
23 cetera, are not to leave. We have testimony from
24 Mr. Barron he never saw anything like that before or
25 after during his time he was employed there. We
26 have Hamid saying that Joe Marcus wasn’t going to
27 let the kids leave the ranch to do the rebuttal film
28 until it was cleared. I don’t think it can be 9075
1 argued that these children were free to go wherever
2 they wanted to go, or this family was free to go
3 wherever they wanted to go.
4 The trip to Brazil. The trip to Brazil.
5 They take them down to a hotel. And have you ever
6 heard anything more bizarre than that, than having
7 people sit in the hotel two to three doors down with
8 the door open so you can’t even walk by in the
9 hallway? And then a private investigator sitting in
10 the lobby? For what purpose, other than to confine,
11 and to intimidate, and to control, and to isolate
12 those people.
13 The trip to Brazil, I think, is also
14 illustrative, and then again, this is something Mr.
15 Jackson, the state of the evidence is, Mr. Jackson
16 knew about. You recall that Gavin testified that he
17 was present during a conversation where he and Frank
18 Tyson and Mr. Jackson testified that Mr. Jackson
19 said that he would join them later. To entice them.
20 So you can’t say he wasn’t aware that they were
21 trying to get this family out of the country.
22 Why are they trying to get this family out
23 of the country? What have they done that deserves
24 for them to be taken out of the country? And why
25 do, when they go to check him out of school, they
26 tell one person they’re going to Arizona? And why,
27 when they go to get passports, do they tell them
28 they’re going to Italy and France, and then they 9076
1 eventually get visas for Brazil, another country?
2 I think the only logical reason for that is
3 they’re trying to hide the trail so nobody can track
4 this family, ever. And take them down to Brazil
5 where at least two people connected with the
6 defendant are familiar with things down there. We
7 have testimony that Mr. Schaffel goes down there.
8 And Mr. Hugo, who was present at the rebuttal
9 filming, was down in Brazil and making phone calls
10 back to people during this particular point in time
11 that was critical to the trip to Brazil.
12 THE COURT: How much — I think we’ll take
13 our break. How much time do you need to finish?
14 MR. SNEDDON: I don’t think I need much
15 longer. Maybe 15 minutes. But counsel had an hour,
16 so —
17 THE COURT: I just was asking.
18 MR. SNEDDON: Okay.
19 THE COURT: All right. We’ll take our break.
20 (Recess taken.)
21 MR. SNEDDON: I’ll try to wrap this up
22 pretty quickly.
23 Oops, sorry.
24 THE COURT: They’re waving at you.
25 MR. SNEDDON: I heard. I could feel it back
26 there. It was like a breeze, a nice one.
28 MR. SNEDDON: I said, and so everybody can 9077
1 hear it again, I’ll try to wrap this up rather
2 quickly, I think. The break helped me do that.
3 I just want to go back and address a couple
4 other items on the conspiracy, and then I’ll turn my
5 attention — and I want to say this at the outset.
6 I believe that we correctly analyzed the state of
7 the law to the Court before we — when we started
8 this, but I think I’d be remiss if I didn’t address
9 at least some of the factual credibility issues that
10 were raised by the defense, but I really don’t
11 believe that that’s pertinent to this particular
12 proceeding, but there’s some things I think need to
13 be clarified about what was said. I’m not going to
14 do it in detail. I’m just going to hit some
15 highlights about things, so….
16 First of all, I just want to get back to the
17 conspiracy. I think there’s another thing that
18 needs to be noted about the associates that the
19 defendant was involved with in these particular
20 adventures that I think that bears some
21 noteworthiness or some reasonable inferences in this
23 A lot has been made about the fact that Marc
24 Schaffel was a person of low credibility, and
25 there’s been evidence that he may have taken a
26 million dollars that he shouldn’t have taken from a
27 lady in Japan, and that Dieter and Ronald may have
28 taken money from Mr. Jackson, a lot of conversations 9078
1 about that.
2 But I got to tell you that the one thing
3 that stands out about that in relationship to this
4 case is that if you’re going to be involved in a
5 conspiracy to save your career, you’re not going to
6 go out and try to hire somebody to help you that’s
7 honest, if you’re going to try to extort something
8 out of somebody, if you’re going to try to control
9 and isolate individuals and falsely imprison them
10 and move them around and keep their kids away from
12 You’re going to get the kind of people that
13 you know are willing to do things that are
14 dishonest. These are people that the defendant’s
15 been associated with for many, many years, and he
16 knows their character, and he knows what they’re
17 capable of. Or you can out and find somebody who is
18 blindly loyal to you, who you can trust implicitly,
19 because it’s somebody who will be at your side and
20 has been at your side and will always be at your
21 side no matter what you request of them. Somebody
22 like Frank Tyson. Those are the kind of people that
23 go to making up a conspiracy of this type with the
24 stakes that are this large.
25 And I think it needs to be clarified that
26 when — in relationship to Mr. Jackson knowing about
27 what goes on, Mr. Sanger glossed over the testimony
28 in this case where he said, “Even Rudy Provencio 9079
1 said that he doesn’t always know what’s going on
2 with Ronald and Dieter and Marc Schaffel.”
3 Well, that’s not exactly what his testimony
5 What his testimony was is that in
6 relationship to what was going on from the crisis
7 from the Bashir tape, that Mr. Jackson was in the
8 information loop and in that loop regularly. That
9 the things — if you check the transcript, the
10 things that he said that Jackson didn’t know about
11 were the other ventures that these people had going
12 on that did not involve this particular crisis. But
13 he was very clear in his testimony that as to this
14 particular crisis, Mr. Jackson was in that loop, and
15 he was in that loop on a regular basis.
16 I think the other thing that needs to be
17 borne out about much that Mr. Sanger makes about
18 “scripted.” I guess the difference is, and I think
19 perhaps there’s some legitimacy to this, given the
20 fact that Mr. Jackson’s an entertainer, that there’s
21 a common-sense meaning for “scripted” and then
22 there’s an entertainment meaning for “scripted,” I
23 would think.
24 The fact of the matter is, whatever way you
25 want to put it, that Debbie Rowe interview was not a
26 legitimate, truthful interview by any stretch of the
27 imagination. And why it should take somebody nine
28 and a half hours to say something nice about the 9080
1 defendant is beyond me. And why they should have to
2 stop the tape and say that, “You didn’t cry well
3 enough, so we’ll go back and cry again,” now if
4 that’s not scripted in the common-sense term, I
5 don’t know what is.
6 And I think that proves just the point we
7 were trying to make with the Janet Arvizo tape is,
8 whether you talk about it’s written, or it’s not
9 written, and for Pete’s sake, look at the photograph
10 that’s in evidence. There’s papers all over that
11 room. You see Marc Schaffel sitting on the ground
12 writing. They weren’t doing their income tax
13 returns. Those were scripts of questions.
14 Now, whether you want to technically say
15 that they were — that something was told to be said
16 this way and that way, obviously they tried to do
17 that. They just weren’t successful with her. She
18 was going to tell the lie that she and the defendant
19 made up years ago. And she was going to stick to
20 that, and she was going to tell it her way. It
21 wasn’t that they didn’t want it another way.
22 I think another thing that needs to be borne
23 out with regard to something I said earlier this
24 morning, Your Honor, and that’s with regards to this
25 ranch sign, the one that said Gavin can’t leave, the
26 one that’s in the logs. I don’t think there’s a
27 shred of evidence in this case that indicates that
28 Marc Schaffel has the kind of power to tell Joe 9081
1 Marcus what to do at that ranch and to tell the
2 people what to put in those logs.
3 It was Joe Marcus who said the kids can’t
4 leave the ranch. And who does Joe Marcus report to?
5 He reports to the defendant in this case, not to
6 Marc Schaffel.
7 I’d like to just finish up by a direct —
8 addressing just a few, and I’m not going to go into
9 all of that, because I don’t think there’s any sense
10 in doing final arguments on a day like this,
11 particularly when I don’t believe the credibility
12 issues are on point. But I think there’s some
13 things that need to be clarified, and frankly, this
14 is a good opportunity to say this.
15 I am — I am offended and I’m sick and tired
16 of the defense standing up in this case, as they’ve
17 done for months and months and months and months,
18 saying that they don’t take it lightly when they
19 accuse somebody of perjury. They said this when
20 they accused me of perjury. They said that when
21 they accused me of suborning perjury. They accused
22 Mr. Auchincloss of that. And now they’re accusing
23 Mr. Zonen of some impropriety. I think they do take
24 it lightly, and the fact of the matter is, there’s a
25 common denominator. Anybody who stands in their
26 way, whether it’s Janet Arvizo, Gavin Arvizo, Star
27 Arvizo, Davellin Arvizo, Rudy Provencio or anybody
28 else in this case that says one thing bad about the 9082
1 defendant in this case are perjurers.
2 I don’t think the law of coincidence is that
3 high. None of us get anything out of this except a
4 lot of grief. So to say that they don’t take it
5 lightly I think is nonsense, and I’d like to show
6 you why some of these things are nonsense.
7 If Rudy — Rudy Provencio is a media guy. He
8 works in the media. He knows the media. Now, if he
9 wanted to go get a notebook and make up a bunch of
10 things about Michael Jackson and implicate him in
11 this case, all he has to do is go to smokinggun.com,
12 download the grand jury transcripts, have an
13 accurate depiction of every single event that
14 occurred in this case and a date reference, and he
15 could have made up the greatest notebook in the
16 world and came in here and testify to it.
17 MR. SANGER: Your Honor, excuse me, I’m just
18 going to object to keep it on track. This argument
19 is limited to the evidence that’s before the jury at
20 the conclusion of the People’s case. So I don’t
21 want to object unnecessarily, but I think we’re
22 going afield from that particular issue talking
23 about “The Smoking Gun” and things that are not in
25 THE COURT: Overruled. Go ahead.
26 MR. SNEDDON: He could have gone out and
27 constructed a notebook that would have been
28 devastating to the defense in every respect. Every 9083
1 date right, every event, every conversation. He
2 could have manufactured conversations that occurred
3 between he and Schaffel, or he and the defendant, or
4 any other parties to this conspiracy that occurred,
5 not only just the two he testified to. He could
6 have made up other conversations if he wanted to be
7 a hero in this case and a perjurer in this case and
8 to do the defendant in in this case. That just
9 doesn’t hold water, like the pay/owe with a big hole
10 in it.
11 If he wanted to be the hero — and one
12 thing, if you could tell, he’s not a dumb person.
13 He didn’t need to do it that way. And probably the
14 reason and likely — the more likely reasonable
15 inference is he did it that way because that’s the
16 truth and that’s the way it happened. And people do
17 things at certain points in time and they’re not
18 looking back that there’s going to be a trial.
19 There was no investigation going on when he took
20 these notes. There was just a crisis going in the
21 media over the defendant and his career.
22 This timeline change makes Gavin a liar.
23 Let’s put it in perspective, if we can.
24 First and foremost, this whole thing about
25 there’s no disclosure until after they go to the
26 lawyers and after they go to Dr. Katz, well,
27 actually there wasn’t a disclosure even with Dr.
28 Katz, so there was nothing for the lawyers to muck 9084
1 around with because he doesn’t disclose to Dr. Katz.
2 As you recall, Dr. Katz’ testimony is he got
3 very emotional, and he terminated the conversation
4 because he felt something had happened, but he
5 didn’t want to go any further.
6 The first disclosure was to law enforcement.
7 Now, what’s the testimony in that case about
8 the disclosure to law enforcement?
9 The testimony elicited by the defense, Mr.
10 Sanger himself did it, elicited from Sergeant Robel,
11 when he was testifying, was they — “they,” Santa
12 Barbara Sheriff’s Department, after having received
13 the information from Mr. Feldman that there had been
14 a report made, or that was the report, to be more
15 accurate — tried to get this family to come to
16 Santa Barbara in order to do an interview with them
17 to see whether or not anything had happened. In
18 other words, to follow up on that responsibility
19 because they had received a mandated report.
20 And what did he say? They didn’t want to be
21 involved. They didn’t want to come. They didn’t
22 want to do it.
23 And, now, does that sound like a family that
24 has a lawsuit on their mind? Or does that sound
25 like a family that just wants to be left alone,
26 that’s tied up in this thing now there was a
27 mandated reporter involved?
28 It just doesn’t hold water. 9085
1 And the timeline never changed. The
2 timeline was, as the testimony disclosed from Gavin,
3 that was consistent with his grand jury testimony,
4 which was consistent with his trial testimony, that
5 he told Sergeant Robel early on during the
6 investigation, that the crimes — the molestations
7 occurred during February and March. Gavin doesn’t
8 pick the time period. The prosecutors pick the time
9 period that’s involved.
Let me briefly interrupt Sneddon’s argument by pointing out that he is telling a bald faced LIE! Here is a comparison of the charges against Jackson when the initial complaint was filed in December 2003: when Tom Sneddon filed his initial felony complaint against Michael Jackson on December 18th, 2003, it consisted of the following allegations by Gavin, which allegedly occurred from February 7th through March 10th, 2003:
- 7 counts of lewd acts upon a child (which Gavin Arvizo originally claimed happened to him BEFORE he and his family were “forced” to shoot the rebuttal video on February 20th, 2003)
- 2 counts of administering an intoxicant
However, in the grand jury indictment that was filed on April 21st, 2004, the dates of the alleged offenses shifted to February 20th through March 12th, 2003, and the charges were materially altered as follows:
- 4 counts of lewd acts upon a child (which Gavin Arvizo now claims happened to him AFTER he and his family were “forced” to shoot the rebuttal video on February 20th, 2003)
- 1 count of an attempted lewd act upon a child
- 4 counts of administering an intoxicant
- 1 count of conspiracy to commit child abduction, false imprisonment, and extortion
The contrast between the initial charges and the indictment couldn’t be more stark! Now, back to Sneddon’s argument:
10 Now, before the grand jury, Gavin testified
11 to two incidents involving the defendant. And what
12 he told the grand jury and what he told the jury
13 here is, “I believe that I was molested on other
14 occasions. I have a feeling that I was,” which is
15 what he was talking about to Sergeant Robel in an
16 interview. “But,” he said, “I have to testify under
17 oath. Under oath, I only remember two.”
18 Now, does that sound like something that a
19 perjurer would do? My Lord, the only two people
20 present when all this happens is the defendant and
21 Gavin. He could have made up 20 allegations if he
22 wanted to. He could have made up more horrendous
23 things if he wanted to. Instead, the kid’s honest
24 enough to say, “I think it might have happened on
25 other occasions, but Lord, I’m not going to come in
26 here under oath and say something against Mr.
27 Jackson that I don’t believe that I can credibly say
28 without doubt.” 9086
1 And that’s what he did. And they want you
2 to believe that he’s a perjurer because he did that?
3 That doesn’t make sense, like a lot of the things
4 that the defense is urging in this case.
5 I just want to clarify two other things and
6 I’m about to sit down, Your Honor.
7 With regard to Janet — and I’m not going to
8 be an apologist for Janet Arvizo. I’m also not
9 going to sit here and tell you that I think that
10 she’s a perjurer or that she’s willfully false in
11 her testimony. I will tell you that, as I think has
12 been clear and from a lot of things that happened,
13 that she is a woman who projects a person who has
14 been involved in a domestic relationship with a lot
15 of abuse for 16 years, and it’s showing, and it
16 showed here in the courtroom.
17 And I think it’s a little unfair for counsel
18 to stand up here and say that Janet created false
19 information about her husband beating her up,
20 created false information about a molestation, just
21 like happened in this case, from what happened
22 before, when there is public records that exist that
23 show that her husband was publicly convicted, beyond
24 a reasonable doubt and to a moral certainty, of not
25 one, but two offenses of abusing not only her, but
26 her daughter. And that a Judge, a neutral
27 magistrate, was so offended by the conduct that he
28 took away visitation rights for that father for 9087
1 three years, along with a lot of other things that
3 Now, that’s a little unfair. That’s a tad
4 unfair to say somebody’s a perjurer and somebody’s
5 setting up the defendant, Michael Jackson, when
6 there’s objective proof of the fact that what she
7 said was truthful.
8 And this whole thing about the sexual
9 molestation, can anybody forget — can you forget?
10 I’m sure you haven’t. Can anybody forget, any of
11 these people who are sitting here, hearing Davellin
12 on the stand talk about that conversation involving
13 her mother and herself and her father where her
14 father confesses to her that he molested her when
15 she was a child and she breaks down and she cries?
16 Can anybody forget that? And that makes her a
17 perjurer? That makes Janet a perjurer for making up
18 something that actually happened?
19 I’d just tell the Court, you know, it’s
20 things like this, all the way through this case,
21 that when you look at this thing with the standard,
22 not only eventually, but right now, that’s required
23 of this Court, I could stand up here for another two
24 hours and make a final argument to you just like Mr.
25 Sanger did, and I could go through point by point by
26 point and show you the unreasonableness of their
27 position, and I think I’ve just given you some
28 isolated examples of just what I’m talking about. 9088
1 And I just submit to the Court that given
2 the standard in this case and given the evidence
3 before this Court, that this jury ought to be able
4 to be given the opportunity to decide for themselves
5 the credibility of these issues — of these
6 witnesses, given the totality of the circumstances,
7 and that’s the very standard that the Court of
8 Appeals and the Supreme Court sets out for an 1118
10 Thank you.
11 THE COURT: All right. Thank you.
12 No, Counsel, you don’t need to stand.
13 MR. SANGER: Thank you, Your Honor.
After hearing the arguments of both sides, Judge Melville decided to deny the defense’s 1118 motion to dismiss the case based on insufficient evidence.
14 THE COURT: The Court’s going to deny the
15 1118 motion. The request to dismiss the charges is
17 I’m going to bring in the jury. Are you
18 prepared to call your first witness?
19 MR. SANGER: Yes, Your Honor.
20 THE COURT: All right.
21 MR. MESEREAU: Excuse me, Your Honor?
22 There’s a motion in limine that the prosecution made
23 about a couple witnesses we plan to call.
24 THE COURT: They don’t seem to be the first
26 MR. MESEREAU: They’re not the first two.
27 THE COURT: So I’ll put that off.
28 Get the jury in. 9089
1 MR. MESEREAU: Okay. Thank you.
3 (The following proceedings were held in
4 open court in the presence and hearing of the
7 THE COURT: Good afternoon.
8 THE JURY: (In unison) Good afternoon.
9 THE COURT: You may proceed.
10 THE CLERK: Judge, we need to swear the
12 THE COURT: All right. Please raise your
13 right hand and face the clerk.
15 WADE J. ROBSON
16 Having been sworn, testified as follows:
18 THE WITNESS: I do.
19 THE CLERK: Please be seated. State and
20 spell your name for the record.
21 THE WITNESS: My name is Wade J. Robson,
22 spelled W-a-d-e, initial J., R-o-b-s-o-n.
23 THE CLERK: Thank you.
24 MR. MESEREAU: May I proceed, Your Honor?
25 THE COURT: You may.