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Michael Jackson:"Brutal Truths" of Star's life

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Michael Jackson:"Brutal Truths" of Star's life

Post  Panda on Thu 10 Oct - 7:42

Michael Jackson: 'Brutal Truths' Of Star's LifeThe five-month civil trial between Michael Jackson's family and his final concert promoter hears forensic details of his habits.9:14am UK, Thursday 03 October 2013 Michael Jackson used prescription drugs to control pain
EmailBy Greg Milam, US Correspondent

The behind-the-scenes world of King of Pop Michael Jackson was laid bare during five months of evidence and "ugly" testimony in the civil trial between his family and final concert promoter.

The star's son Prince, ex-wife Debbie Rowe and mother Katherine took the stand during a brutal examination of his life and death.

Jackson's constant physical pain, his insecurities and struggles to perform, his use of prescription drugs and his relationship with his children were all picked over in forensic detail.

Jackson's family launched the wrongful death suit against AEG Live, alleging it was negligent in hiring and supervising Dr Conrad Murray.

AEG Live has always mainted it did not hire Dr Conrad Murray
The physician was convicted of involuntary manslaughter over the death of Jackson at his Los Angeles home in June 2009. He died from an overdose of the surgical anaesthetic propofol.

Jackson had been due to start a series of 50 comeback concerts in London.

AEG Live maintained it never hired Dr Murray - and that Jackson himself chose and employed the doctor.

In court, one AEG executive described the Jacksons' claim as "nothing more than a shakedown".

Lawyers for the Jacksons claimed the promoter had put profit ahead of the star's health. They produced emails which they said showed AEG believed it did employ Dr Murray.

They showed the jury a clip of a Sky News interview with AEG chief Randy Phillips, conducted in the days immediately after Jackson's death, in which he said "so we hired him (Murray)".

In one email read to court, an AEG employee referred to Jackson as a "freak".

Jackson's 16-year-old son Prince told the jury about seeing his father as he lay dying in his bedroom. He said Murray told him: "Sorry kids, dad's dead."

Prince said his father had tried to give his children as humble an upbringing as possible. He also said his father predicted the comeback tour was "going to kill" him.

Debbie Rowe gave her first ever public insight into the couple's marriage, including Jackson's joy at having children.

But she also revealed much about the star's history of using drugs to control pain.

Prince Jackson gave evidence by video link during the trial

But AEG said it would never have financed the This Is It comeback if it knew Jackson was using propofol and "playing Russian roulette in his bedroom every night".

It told the jury it should not be held responsible for what Jackson did in private, in his own bedroom at night.

At times the trial descended into open hostility between the two sides. The judge was forced to warn the lawyers about their behaviour after a shouting match in the court corridors.

At the heart of the trial - which has racked up legal fees running into the millions - was the question of how much Jackson's legacy is truly worth.

And one friend of Jackson, who cared for his children during recording sessions, told Sky News it was wrong for the family to put the children through the court ordeal.

Melissa Vardey said: "He didn't want his children to have that pressure. He just wanted them to grow up as natural kids.

"I loved Michael Jackson, I love his children and I want people to know that he was a completely, authentically, beautiful parent."

Dr Murray refused to give evidence at the trial.

He is still appealing his conviction, although he is due to be released from prison later this month.

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