Jay Leno, the host of NBC’s “The Tonight Show,” testified today that the young accuser in the Michael Jackson child molesting trial called him several times to say he was a big fan of the talk show host, but that he never asked him for any money.
Mr. Leno’s testimony did not bolster the strategy of Mr. Jackson’s defense lawyers, who had called him in an effort to show that the accuser and his mother tried to finagle money or other benefits from him and other celebrities.
Mr. Jackson is accused of molesting the boy in February or March 2003 when he was 13, giving him alcohol and conspiring to hold the boy’s family captive to get them to rebut a documentary in which Mr. Jackson said he slept with boys.
In the documentary, made by Martin Bashir, a British journalist, Mr. Jackson admitted to sleeping with young boys, though not in a sexual manner. After it aired in February 2003, Mr. Jackson, who the prosecution contends was worried about how this revelation would go over with the public, decided to make a rebuttal video that featured the accuser and his family praising the singer. Mr. Jackson is charged with holding the family captive while they made the video; the defense counters that the family members were willing