|September 2nd, 2004||Source: MJJFORUM.com|
|No Bail Reduction in Michael Jackson Case|
For the second time Judge Rodney Melville refused to reduce the $3 million bail in the Michael Jackson case after an appeals court asked him to revisit the issue.
Citing justification such as Mr. Jackson´s wealth and his world travel, Judge Melville also wrote "The Grand Jury transcript provides detailed evidence that (the) defendant sought to arrange for the "Doe" family to travel to Brazil, and the statements of the "Doe" family are that this was being done against their will."
"Jackson has no prior criminal record, but this factor is at least partially offset by the allegation that he has previously engaged in similar criminal conduct - the prosecution of which may have been derailed by a private settlement with the alleged victim."
"Defendant has the financial ability to hire private jets and has frequently traveled beyond the borders of the United States," Melville said.
"While on bail, he received his passport back to travel to England. Although defendant subsequently returned his passport to law enforcement, he may request his passport again for international travel before the January 31, 2005 trial date."
"No amount less than $3 million dollars would provide a financial incentive to return and appear for hearings and trial."
|August 29th, 2004||Source: MFMJW.com|
HAPPY BIRTHDAY MICHAEL
MFMJW.com would like to congratulate Michael Jackson on his 46th birthday. I wish you all the best in the future, and hope you will have a great day with your family.
|August 23rd, 2004||Source: MJJFORUM.com|
Santa Barbara Authorities Testify in Evidentiary Hearing
a crucial evidence hearing on Monday, the prosecution in the child molestation
case against entertainer Michael Jackson wound up its presentation by
calling on two law enforcement officers to counter testimony given by
Jackson employees about the raid of Neverland.
|August 21st, 2004||Source: MJJFORUM.com|
|Neverland Staff Testify|
Valley Ranch managers testified Friday that Sheriffs deputies overstepped
the boundaries of their warrant in the search of superstar Michael Jacksons
In the continuation of the singers pre-trial hearings, Property Manager Joseph Marcus and Security Manager Violet Silva testified that authorities searched areas not listed in the warrant.
Defense lawyers, led by Thomas Mesereau, are contending that evidence seized in raids on Neverland and the office of private investigator Bradley Miller should be ruled inadmissible.
The warrant for the Neverland raid, conducted by some 40 officers on November 18, included a search of a building next to the main house. Described in the warrant as security headquarters, it housed a small security office as well as Jacksons private office, an apartment and a video library.
Property Manager Marcus, who oversees Neverlands 60 employees, testified that he initially cooperated with Sheriffs deputies after studying the search warrant. He admitted to giving the deputies access to certain areas not listed no the warrant.
"They were doing an initial sweep of the buildings to secure the area and make sure no one was in the buildings, testified Marcus. They did the sweep, but then decided they wanted to search. I objected because it was not in the scope of the search warrant."
Marcus unlocked doors for the deputies, as "they were going to drill it if I didn´t open it, so I did." He further testified that Deputy Jeff Klipakis told him he would have the search warrant amended to cover these areas.
In his testimony, however, Lt. Klipakis denied having said this. "He told me he didn´t feel the warrant covered that office," he said. "I told him that was my decision, and we were going to make an entry into the office, and he used his keys to open it."
"Why would I be talking to (Jackson employees) about what my plans are going to be?" he asked.
Marcus further testified that he had asked Santa Barbara District Attorney, Thomas Sneddon, to allow Steve Cochran access to the ranch during the raid. Sneddon told him thats not possible. Cochran is one of Jacksons attorneys and had been waiting outside Neverlands front gates.
Security Manager, Violet Silva, confirmed in her testimony that deputies told her the warrant would be amended.
"I shouted out ´did you get that addendum?´" Silva testified, saying the deputy shrugged her off, indicating the amendment had not been obtained.
She also testified that Lt. Klapakis later told her, "Just consider the whole building a security office."
During the proceedings, prosecutors portrayed Jackson as being obsessed with security and suggested he used his private office to personally monitor the ranch. They said Jacksons bedroom had been set up with surveillance equipment and an alarm system.
Defense Attorney Robert Sanger also introduced a number police reports as evidence. The reports referred to Neverland employees being "detained" or "secured" for questioning.
Klapakis testified that employees were not forced into answering questions but were brought to the ranch house in order to determine who was on the property. "People were free to come and go once we identified them," he said.
Also on Friday, Judge Melville ordered the mother of Jacksons accuser to testify on September 17. She had been unavailable to testify this week after giving birth in July.
A further hearing has been scheduled for Monday to conclude defense testimony on their motion to suppress evidence.
Melville said his rulings would be postponed until after this testimony.
Source: AP/Santa Maria Times/Santa Barbara News-Press/MJJForum