A Los Angeles jury has found AEG Live concert promoters not guilty of negligence in hiring the doctor who killed him. The Jackson family had been seeking $290m (£180m) for emotional losses, plus an unspecified amount for economic losses.
The verdict was read out by the court clerk:
Dr Conrad Murray was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter for his role in the death of Michael Jackson in 2009. Jackson died from an overdose of propofol, a surgical anaesthetic. Murray is due to be released later this month after serving two years in jail.
Jackson’s family accused AEG Live of failing to properly investigate the former cardiologist before hiring him. The company denied hiring Murray, claiming that the singer insisted on having him as a doctor. The jury concluded that the promoters did hire the doctor, but that he was not unfit or incompetent for the job, and so the promoters were not negligent.
Testimony at the civil trial revealed that only Michael Jackson and his doctor knew that Jackson was taking propofol. In his closing argument, defence attorney Marvin Putnam said:
“AEG would never have agreed to finance this tour if they knew Mr Jackson was playing Russian roulette in his bedroom every night.”
In a statement after the verdict was announced, Putnam said:
“The jury’s decision completely vindicates AEG Live, confirming what we have known from the start – that although Michael Jackson’s death was a terrible tragedy … not a tragedy of AEG Live’s making.”
Tags: AEG Live, Michael Jackson, Michael Jackson death
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