Michael Jackson’s attorney Mark Geragos held a press conference earlier today to lash out at the chartered jet that bugged his client’s flight from Las Vegas to Santa Barbara when he turned himself in on child molestation charges last week. He also had a stern warning for those claiming to represent Jackson or the media outlets that put them on the air. Read on for his full statement.
“I have with me Matthew Geragos and Brian Kabotec. We called this press conference today. Yesterday it came out or was publicly reported that there had been some video cameras that were installed on the jet that was chartered by my client Michael Jackson’s company and that took us back and forth from another location to Santa Barbara.
“It was disclosed that those two video cameras, which also apparently had audio on them, were surreptitiously placed in there, were recording attorney/client conversations and then somebody had the unmitigated gall to shop those tapes around to media outlets in order to sell them to the highest bidder.
“In response to that this morning, Mr. Kabotec and Matthew went into a Los Angeles courtroom downtown, Judge David Yaffey’s courtroom and obtained a temporary restraining order against that company, XtraJet. That temporary restraining order prohibits them from doing anything with that tape, with that confidential attorney/client communication and they cannot show it to anybody. They cannot duplicate it. They cannot sell it.
“That also they have been restrained from doing anything with that airplane at this point until we have a chance to inspect it and get to the bottom of exactly who did what we believe is not only a violation of federal criminal law, state, the state penal code and an assortment of California causes of action.
“We’ve also filed suit this morning against the airline company and we reserve the right to file suit against anyone and everyone who’s remotely connected with this what I think is one of the most outrageous acts that I’ve ever seen in my 20 years of practicing criminal law.
“The press conference today is not going to be question and answer. I have besides that in announcing that because we’ve been inundated with inquiries about this tape at the office, I also want to make one other statement and make it unequivocally clear.
“Michael Jackson is not going to be abused. Michael Jackson is not going to be slammed is not going to be a pinata for every person who has financial motives, for every person who thinks that they can get, as the lawyer for the charter company said today, we had a lottery ticket and we thought we were going to do something with it.
“This is not the lottery. This is this man’s life. This is his family’s life. These are scurrilous accusations. We are going to, and I’ve been given full authority, we will land on you like a ton of bricks.
“We will land on you like a hammer if you do anything to besmirch this man’s reputation, anything to intrude on his privacy in any way that’s actionable. We will unleash a legal torrent like you’ve never seen.
“We, I believe, will put Extra Jet out of business for this outrageous act. Anybody who is connected with it we will put and seek to do everything else to put them out of business.
“Michael Jackson is no longer going to be somebody who is on the receiving end of every scurrilous accusation known to man. There are people out there speaking who claim to know Michael Jackson, who claim to have worked for Michael Jackson who have never laid eyes on him.
“The press puts them on without — unblinkingly. That is not going to go on anymore. We will demand that any outlet, that any person who comes out shows their bona fides before they’re allowed to just repeat these scurrilous actions and we will meet any accusation that’s made with every legal avenue and we will not sit back and allow him to be abused and that’s what’s actually going on here.
“If anybody doesn’t think based upon what’s happened so far that the true motivation of these charges and these allegations is anything but money and the seeking of money then they’re living in their own Neverland. Thank you.”