*Throughout Michael Jackson‘s career, words like ‘odd,’ ‘strange,’ ‘bizarre,’ ‘eccentric,’ and many others often followed him around like paparazzi follow inebriated celebrities.
But a lawyer for the parent company of AEG Live LLC took it to another level when he labeled Jackson a ‘freak’ on the day the singer singed a multimillion contract for a series of comeback concerts, emails displayed for a jury recently showed.
The emails were presented by Brian Panish, an attorney for Jackson’s mother in her lawsuit claiming AEG was negligent in hiring the personal physician who was later convicted of killing the pop superstar.The lawsuit also says AEG pushed Jackson to extreme exhaustion despite signs that he was in poor health. The emails were exchanged Jan. 28, 2009, roughly four months before the singer’s death. During the messaging, AEG Live General Counsel Shawn Trell told his boss that he was going to Jackson’s home to sign contracts for the “This Is It” shows later that year in London. Ted Fikre, the general counsel for Anschutz Entertainment Group, responded:
Panish expressed that the emails further exemplified the lack of respect by AEG toward the deceased pop star
Jessica Stebbins Bina, a trial defense lawyer for AEG, said the emails were shown merely to humiliate AEG.
“We are four weeks into trial and we have yet to hear one piece of substantive evidence.”
Despite skepticism by the opposing council, Panish says that he intends to show more evidence of AEG’s disdain for Jackson.