Michael Jackson Trial Opens
What looks set to be one of the costliest trials of the decade launched this week as Michael Jackson’s family began their RM122 billion lawsuit against concert promoters who they claim ignored health warnings and worked the singer to death.
The family claims promotions giant AEG Live ignored Jackson’s drug addiction and pressured him to sign up for a run of shows at London’s O2 Arena.
Representing the family, lawyer Brian Panish said AEG chiefs are the only people to claim they did not know about Jacko’s addiction to prescription drugs – something he casts doubt over given the pressure AEG was under to book the singer ahead of rival Live Nation.
“You don’t do that with white gloves. You do what you’ve got to do if you want to be No 1 in this rough business of concert promotions,” Panish said.
“There were no rules. It didn’t matter what it took. They didn’t care who got lost in the wash. Forget about helping Mr Jackson. The show must go on.”
One of the key aspects of the case will be who hired Dr Conrad Murray, the physician who was jailed for the singer’s manslaughter. Jackson’s family say his RM 473,000 per month wage demands should have rung alarm bells at AEG who ignored them.
“When a red flag comes up, do you turn away or do you look into it? AEG ignored red flags and hired Dr Murray,” Panish said.
“Michael Jackson, Dr Conrad Murray and AEG Live each played a part in the ultimate result — the death of Michael Jackson.”
Climbers Battle Sherpas at the Top of Everest
When you are 21,000 feet up the tallest mountain in the world, there are more than enough dangers from avalanches, rock falls and slipping down the icy slopes without having to worry about being lynched by an angry mob.
But that was just what two Swiss and one British climbers had to deal with this week after they got into a fight with their local Sherpa guides atop Mount Everest.
“As climbers, we go through a lot of very dangerous experiences but we have never felt like this before,” said Jonathan Griffith.
“As the mob kicked and punched me and threw rocks, I was totally convinced I was going to die.”
The Sherpas had apparently accused the three Westerners of knocking ice down onto one of the guides far below. When the climbers came back down to the base camp there was a mob of 150 angry locals already assembled.
“Ueli had a rock thrown in his face. Simone was stabbed with a pen knife, which luckily hit his belt on his rucksack.”
Eventually a group of other Western climbers came to the aid of the trio.
Tourism Ministry official Dipendra Paudel said three Sherpas at the centre of the row were no longer working on the mountain.
He said the fight had been caused by a “communication gap”, adding: “This has been sorted out.”