x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Jackson to testify in British court

Michael Jackson will appear in a British court next week to testify in a lawsuit brought against him by a Bahraini prince.

Michael Jackson waves as he arrives at the Santa Barbara County courthouse on June 3 2005, in Santa Maria, California.
Michael Jackson waves as he arrives at the Santa Barbara County courthouse on June 3 2005, in Santa Maria, California.

LONDON // Michael Jackson will appear in a British court next week to testify in a lawsuit brought against him by a Bahraini prince, the singer's lawyer said today. The reclusive 50-year-old pop star is being sued by Sheikh Abdullah bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the second son of the king of Bahrain, who says Mr Jackson reneged on a contract to record a new album and write an autobiography. He also says Mr Jackson owes him $7 million (Dh25.7m) after the prince paid for his legal costs, travel and other expenses.

Mr Jackson spent time in Bahrain as a guest of the royal family following a 2005 trial at the end of which he was acquitted of child molestation charges. "He has been cleared by his medical advisers to travel in two days' time," Mr Jackson's lawyer Robert Englehart told the High Court in London. "Mr Jackson is intending to travel to this country ... and will be available to give evidence to your lordship." The US singer is expected to appear on Monday afternoon.

Mr Englehart had initially argued that Mr Jackson was unwell and should not travel, handing the judge a report earlier this week on the singer's medical condition. Bankim Thanki, representing Sheikh Abdullah, said the medical evidence produced was "pretty unsubstantial" and that Mr Jackson had a habit of producing a "sick note" when he did not want to turn up in court. *Reuters