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Each Michael’s fan should be a bit of a LEGAL EXPERT!

November 21, 2009
Provided that Michae Jackson was forcefully involved in hundreds of court trials I think that each Michael’s fan should be a kind of a legal expert.

So for a start let us learn some of the basics of the 1993  Jordan Chandler case. The first thing to remember here is that there were two cases opened against Jackson at the time – a civil suit for a money settlement filed by Jordan’s attorney Larry Feldman  and a criminal investigation (which ended in no indictment) was carried out by several law enforcement bodies – the Los Angeles District Attorney Gil Garcetti, the Santa Barbara D.A. Tom Sneddon, plus the sheriffs of Los Angeles and Santa Barbara.

Thus the two cases – a civil and a criminal one – were running parallel to each other with the criminal investigation lasting for half a year more after the settlement in the civil case. The Chandlers could very well testify in a criminal trial (if there had been an indictment) as the settlement agreement with Jackson did not preclude them from such a prospective – however they declined to do so.

The MJcafe provides some details:

“When Jordan Chandler accused Michael of molestation, California authorities began a criminal investigation into the case. This thorough investigation lasted for over a year and in the end, the authorities concluded that there was not enough evidence to file any criminal charges against Michael, which means that the State of California did not prosecute Michael and ended the case.

However, while the investigation was taking place, shortly after the California authorities began their investigation into the case, the boy’s family decided not to wait for the authorities to find truth and filed a civil lawsuit against Michael.

A civil lawsuit can be filed by anyone against anyone, and is completely separate from any criminal lawsuit/trial.  Civil suits generally focus on monetary penalties, and in the civil case of Jordan Chandler against Michael, the boy’s side was seeking millions of dollars from Michael. While the amount of money sought was not disclosed, the boy’s lawyer Larry Feldman did ask to review all of Michael’s finaces.

The civil suit ended with an out-of-court settlement in January 1994, but the criminal investigation continued for 8 more months, until September 1994, when it concluded without any charges being leveled against Michael Jackson” (

Another article says that the criminal investigation lasted for 13 months (with no avail) during which as many as 400 witnesses were interviewed:

”In September 1994, Los Angeles County District Attorney Gil Garcetti and Santa Barbara County District Attorney Tom Sneddon announced that after a 13-month investigation in which 400 witnesses were interviewed, no charges would be filed against Michael Jackson.

The boy who had accused him of misconduct had declined to testify against him in court in any possible prosecution. The formal investigation concluded in September 1994 and the case is closed. However, under California law, cases involving minors expire six years from the date of any alleged accusation, and in this particular case, the statute of limitations expires in 1999.

Lightweight news outlets that refer to “charges” of child molestation against Michael are incorrect, as this word carries the distinct legal meaning that an actual criminal prosecution was begun against him.

There were two grand juries convened to review the evidence , but neither of them returned an indictment against MJ, and he was neither arrested nor charged with a crime.

Some news organizations also conflate the criminal investigation with the civil lawsuit filed against him by his accusers, saying that the criminal case was dropped after he settled out of court. In reality, the two proceedings were legally separate”


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