Lawyers representing Michael Jackson have asked the judge in the singer’s child sex abuse case to declare a mistrial. They say they have evidence that witnesses have discussed their testimony outside the courtroom, in violation of court rules.
Earlier on Friday, jurors heard for the first time about previous claims of child abuse against the singer. The star denies 10 charges, including child abuse and false imprisonment.
The judge said he would consider the defence’s call for a mistrial next week.
In court on Friday, Larry Feldman, a lawyer who also represents the star’s current accuser, spoke about a 1993 out-of-court payment made by Mr Jackson to an alleged victim. Mr Feldman did not say how much the 1993 alleged victim had received in an out-of-court settlement, but said the matter had been “resolved in his favour”.
Turning to the current case, he said the family of current accuser Gavin Arvizo sought legal advice from him before alerting the authorities to abuse claims.
But the lawyer said he did not intend to file a civil lawsuit against Mr Jackson at that time. He referred the family to psychologist Stan Katz, and then called prosecutors who later brought charges against the accused.
In another exchange, an investigator defended the use of over 60 people to search of the singer’s Neverland ranch two year’s ago.
Sgt Jeff Klapackis of the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s office denied claims by the defence that the search was overdone because Mr Jackson was a celebrity.
He said there was a high concentration of officers because they were only given one day to cover the whole ranch.