Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Michael Jackson Family Wrongful Death Suit “Gutted” by Judge

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Before everyone gets too excited: the wrongful death suit brought by Katherine Jackson against AEG Live was allowed to proceed on Wednesday by Judge Yvette Palazuelos. However: little remains of the case. Katherine Jackson’s attempt to wrest millions from AEG Live was “gutted,” as on one observer described it. Not only that, but Jackson choreographer Kenny Ortega was removed as a defendant by the judge. Also, the judge said in her remarks that she doubted the Jackson case had much left to it.

“If the object was to get him to rehearsals, I don’t see that as a wrongful or illegal act,” she said. The judge threw out the three complaints concerning fraud. What remains are three complaints concerning Dr. Conrad Murray. They’e gone to summary judgment. That means the judge will rule without a trial.

Katherine Jackson is no doubt frustrated by her attempts to sue someone in the death of her son, Michael. This didn’t help. The Jackson lawsuit would like to make AEG Live responsible for hiring Dr. Conrad Murray to care for Michael. But AEG Live never had a contract with Dr. Murray and never paid him. Michael Jackson died in Dr. Murray’s care before any of that could happen. The doctor, in fact, had already been in Michael’s employ.

The people who were following Michael Jackson’s progress during rehearsals for the “This Is It” tour by and large didn’t even know who Dr.Murray was on the day Michael died. This reporter can tell you that when I asked about him on June 25, 2009, everyone associated with the tour said, “Michael asked us to hire him. He brought him in.”

It’s going to be a rude awakening when everyone realizes that Michael Jackson, who’d abused his leverage with doctors for more than 20 years, brought about his own demise by making a deal with Murray. AEG Live had nothing to do with that.

Meantime, the executors of Michael Jackson’s estate are suing Mrs. Jackson and Howard Mann, her business partner, for violating their copyrights, etc.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedmanhttps://www.showbiz411.com
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.
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