Jackson family lawsuit against AEG Live continues

2:47 PM, Apr 30, 2013   |    comments
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LOS ANGELES (NBCNC) - It's been nearly four years since Michael Jackson died unexpectedly in 2009 following rigorous rehearsals for a comeback tour.  

Jackson died from an overdose of the sedative Propofol.  

His doctor, Conrad Murray, was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in 2011.

Now a civil trial will determine if tour sponsor AEG Live was ultimately responsible.

Michael Jackson's family arrived at the courthouse Monday surrounded by media and paparazzi. 

His mother, Katherine Jackson, and Micheal's three children Prince, Paris and Blanket are suing AEG claiming promoters pushed Michael to go forward with his "This Is It" comeback tour.

Jackson's former attorney, Thomas Mesereau, says emails between Murray and AEG will strengthen the Jackson family's case.

"If you look at those emails where they acknowledge they are paying his doctor, they acknowledge that he better perform even if he's not well, I think the defense has a real uphill battle," Meserau points out.

In court papers the Jackson family described AEG as a "heartless, money-driven machine", but promoters fired back saying they kept in touch with Murray consistently regarding Jackson's physical status and that it was Jackson himself who insisted on hiring Murray.  

The trial is also expected to highlight the singer's eccentric lifestyle, including his massive debt,  reported drug use and bizarre behavior in the days leading up to his death.

"AEG is going to blast Michael Jackson," predicts legal analyst Royal Oakes.  "They are going to argue he was a pill-popping doctor shopper whose life was turned upside down by molestation allegations, turned him into a guy who was dependent on drugs, so it's his fault and the doctor's fault, not the promoters fault.

The trial is expected to last about three months and cameras will not be allowed in the courtroom.


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