The Michael Jackson Case
Archived by - The Michael Jackson Repository

"Michael Jackson Stole My Timberlands"
And other reasons why you should always take your meds...

Find out what the mother of Michael Jackson's accuser said in front of the Grand Jury

What's My Age Again?
"This Will Stop the Killers!"
Escape from Neverland: Parts I and II
Social Workers to the Rescue... or not
Forced to go Shopping
The Conspiracy to Dump Urine
Escape from Neverland: Part III
"I Don't Want the Devil's Money"
But seriously...

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What's My Age Again?

In a recent defense motion, attorney Brian Oxman pointed out that the mother of Michael Jackson's accuser "testified before the Grand Jury without the benefit of medications." After reading through hundreds of pages of her testimony, I am inclinded to agree.

Janet Arvizo - who currently goes by the name Janet Jackson - made several bizarre claims throughout the grand jury proceeding. Most notably, she insists that Michael Jackson kidnapped her and her children and, in a cunning ploy to manipulate them into saying nice things about him on camera, convinced the Arvizos that killers were after them.

I wish I was making this up.

If you want to view the transcripts for yourself, click
here although I should warn you that you're in for a major headache if you attempt to read them all, namely because Mrs. Arvizo (or is it Mrs. Jackson now?) doesn't make a whole lot of sense. As one observer bluntly put it, reading Mrs. Arvizo's testimony is like "walking into a wall of dumb." Indeed. Within minutes of being sworn in, Mrs. Arvizo already comes across as somewhat confused when she tells the court that she has no idea how old she is:

Initially, I assumed that Mrs. Arvizo had misspoken. Perhaps she meant that she didn't know how old she was when her sons were born. But then, there it is again on page 4, Janet Arvizo's startling admission that she does not know her own age:

Of course, this doesn't necessarily mean that Michael Jackson didn't kidnap her family and molest her son but this isn't an essay about Jackson's guilt or innocence, it's an essay about the merits of taking your medication. So let's continue.

According to Janet Arvizo's testimony, her family's relationship with Jackson turned sour after the airing of the now infamous Living with Michael Jackson documentary. The two hour program, which placed great emphasis on the nature of Jackson's relationship with Mrs. Arvizo's son "John", led to a huge scandal, which, in turn prompted Jackson's PR team to snap into damage control mode. The measures that were taken to restore Jackson's image after the airing of the documentary are now the basis of the conspiracy charge against him. The indictment alleges that Jackson conspired with several employees to kidnap, falsely imprison and extort statements from the Arvizo family.

And so the story begins.

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"This Will Stop the Killers!"

After the documentary aired in Britain, Jackson allegedly phoned Mrs. Arvizo and insisted that her son had to participate in a press conference to stave off killers:

Pop quiz time! Somebody phones you and tells you that killers are after your child and that the only way to stop them is to have your child participate in a press conference. You:

a) Call the police and tell them that killers are after your child
b) Ask the caller who is after your child and why
c) Question how the heck a public press conference is going to protect your child from killers
d) All of the above
e) Jump on the next flight to Florida to participate in the press conference, no questions asked

Just like any other rational, stable mother, Janet Arvizo picked (e). Upon receiving Jackson's phonecall, she flew to Florida with her kids only to discover that *gasp* there was no press conference. The press conference scam is overt act number one of the alleged conspiracy.

And if you think that was slick, just wait until you hear what Michael Jackson did at a hotel in Florida:

Shocking! He asked Janet Arvizo not to watch Living with Michael Jackson - overt act number two. I'm not really sure how this constitutes kidnapping, false imprisonment or extortion, or why asking somebody not to watch a TV show is illegal but, hell, I'm just a business student, what do I know about law?

Next, Janet Arvizo was asked by one of Jackson's business associates to sign a blank sheet of paper:

Well, I guess since that press conference didn't work out, those pesky killers needed something to keep them happy. For some reason, Mrs. Arvizo didn't question why a blank sheet of paper with her signature on it would be of any use to a bunch of assasins. But then again, these hypothetical killers are after a 12-year-old kid from East L.A, so who knows, right?

If we are to believe Janet Arvizo's version of events, her signature from the blank sheet of paper was then superimposed onto another document that had her agreeing to take part in a lawsuit against the station that aired Living with Michael Jackson. Sounds plausible. It's not like this woman is lawsuit happy or anything.

After manipulating her into signing the blank sheet of paper, Michael Jackson's "people" had the nerve to make her sign yet another document:

Aren't these friggin' killers every satisfied? Damn! Anyway, the statement in question must have been the one that Janet Arvizo released in February 2003, where she referred to Jackson as her "children's angel." Either she was tricked into signing the statement or Mrs. Arvizo is now trying justify the fact that she publicly praised Michael Jackson throughout the entire time period during which she was allegedly held hostage by him. I'll let you figure that one out.

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After the trip to Florida, the Arvizo family flew back to Santa Barbara on a private jet with Jackson, three of his nannies, his children, his doctor, Chris Tucker, Tucker's fiancee Azja and several others. And this is where the story just gets fucking weird.

According to Mrs. Arvizo, she woke up in the middle of the night to a very disturbing sight:

In response to this allegation, a Jackson supporter who regularly posts on the King of Pop fan forum proposed the following challenge to anybody who believes Janet Arvizo's story: try licking a child in front of his or her parent and see what happens. So far, nobody has gone through with the experiment but I'm going to go out on a limb and assume that anybody who attempts this will end up getting an ass kicking. Of course, Janet Arvizo is clearly not your typical parent and in true form, she simply brushed the incident off as a hallucination (remember what I said earlier about taking your medication?)

Interestingly enough, the only other person who could corroborate Mrs. Arvizo's story was her younger son "James." Everybody else who was on the plane just happened to be asleep when Michael Jackson decided to spontaneously start licking "John" Arvizo's head. Isn't that remarkable?

Once the plane landed in Santa Barbara, Jackson allegedly held the family hostage at his Neverland ranch (overt act number four). According to Mrs. Arvizo, Jackson's business associate Dieter Weisner repeatedly told the family that they were not allowed to leave Neverland because Jackson wanted them to participate in a videotaped rebuttal to the Martin Bashir documentary. Naturally, she was told that this would stop the killers (overt act number five).

All I have to say is that Jackson and his henchmen sure concocted one hell of a scheme - convincing this poor family that killers were after them just so that they could get some footage of the Arvizos praising Jackson. Here's a thought: why didn't Jackson's associates just ask the Arvizos to appear in the video? Jackson had helped "John" Arvizo pay his medical bills, surely this family would have been more than happy to defend him in an interview. Was this alleged kidnapping scheme even necessary? Either Michael Jackson is a mentally challenged version of Don Corleone or Janet Arvizo is making the whole thing up.

Not that it matters because the footage of the Arvizos was never even featured in the final version of Jackson's rebuttal video. Kind of defeats the whole purpose of this kidnapping plot, no?

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Escape from Neverland: Parts I and II

After days of being held against her will at Neverland, Mrs. Arvizo finally decided to seek help from Jackson's house manager Jesus Salas:

Salas helped the Arvizo family escape from Neverland in the middle of the night in what Janet Arvizo described as a "box, expensive car." Although she was now free from the evil clutches of Michael Jackson and his business associates turned henchmen, Mrs. Arvizo did not phone the police or tell anybody that she had just escaped from a kidnapper. She did, however, begin to receive numerous phonecalls from Jackson's associate Frank Tyson, asking her to come back to Neverland (overt act number six).

Gee, I wasn't aware that kidnappers ask their victims to go somewhere with them. I thought that they generally... umm... kidnapped them.

Oh well, there goes my belief system.

Anyway, here's what was said regarding Mrs. Arvizo's decision to return to her kidnapper's home:

Frank Tyson also allegedly promised Mrs. Arvizo that "the Germans" (Deiter Weisner and attorney Ron Konitzer) had been fired after Jackson discovered how mean they had been to the family. This, along with Tyson's insistance that her children were in danger, prompted Mrs. Arvizo to return to Neverland.

But when the Arvizos arrived, they were horrified to discover that "the Germans" were back. Uh oh. Immediately realizing that it had been a bad idea to return to the place where she had previously been held hostage (who would have thought?), Mrs. Arvizo again sought the help of Jesus Salas. Apparently, even though he had turned on Jackson by helping his kidnapping victims escape, Jesus Salas still had a job at Neverland. That was awfully nice of Mr. Jackson. Most crime bosses would have fired the dude - or killed him. Jackson must have at least scared him though because Jesus Salas told Mrs. Arvizo that he could no longer help the family. Tragic.

Now Janet Arvizo knew that something was amiss and demanded to be returned home:

Mrs. Arvizo reluctantly left her children with their kidnapper and was returned to her boyfriend Jay Jackson's house in Los Angeles:

What, they don't have payphones in East L.A? Or here's another idea: since Michael Jackson had so graciously granted Janet Arvizo her complete freedom, why didn't she just physically go to the police station and report that her kids had been abducted?

Oh well. Nobody's perfect.

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Social Workers to the Rescue... Or Not

Luckily for Janet Arvizo, another opportunity to get her kids back presented itself to her on February 17, when she received a call from social workers who wanted to interview the Arvizo family.

Time for another pop quiz. Social workers phone you and ask to interview your children, who have been kidnapped by an evil pop star. You:

a) Tell the social workers that your kids have been kidnapped by an evil popstar
b) Phone up the kidnappers and say, "Hey, do you think you guys could maybe bring my kids back for a day, just so that they can be interviewed by social workers?"

I guess since her phones had allegedly been tapped, Mrs. Arvizo decided it would be a bad idea to tell the social workers what was going on. Instead, she called up Frank Tyson who apparently had no problem bringing the kids for an interview, on one condition: Janet Arvizo had to return to Neverland to give a videotaped statement about how much Michael Jackson had helped her family.

Mrs. Arvizo agreed to do the rebuttal video and Frank Tyson agreed to bring the kids to be interviewed by the DCFS. Isn't it nice when kidnappers and their victim's family members are able to work past their differences and negotiate? The video, which never actually aired on television, was played for the grand jury:

Yeah, lady, I have a lot of "whys" too, but they have nothing to do with any alleged criminal activity on Michael Jackson's part.

After filming the rebuttal video, Mrs. Arvizo was allegedly advised by Jackson's Private Investigator Brad Miller to contact an attorney before meeting with the social workers. Mrs. Arvizo got in contact with Vicki Podberesky, who allegedly convinced Mrs. Arvizo that she had to praise Michael Jackson when social workers interviewed her or else her kids would be removed from her custody:

On the day of the interview, Chris Tucker's fiancee Azja and a Jackson associate named Asaf showed up at Mrs. Arvizo's apartment. When social workers told Azja and Asaf that they could not be there during the interview, Asaf helped Mrs. Arvizo put a wire on. While one might argue that this is proof of a conspiracy, it should be noted that Mrs. Arvizo turned the device off less than a minute into the interview (the tape was aired in its entirety on NBC last year) so how can she now claim that she lied to social workers because she knew she was being listened to?

You underestimated Mrs. Arvizo if you thought she didn't have an explanation for that one - even though she turned the wire off, she was convinced that Jackson's people could still hear what she was saying because Asaf told her that there was another tape recorder in the room. Mrs. Arvizo says that Asaf told her this after she had been wired, but nowhere on the tape can Asaf be heard making such a statement. When asked to explain why, here's what Mrs. Arvizo said:

Right. Jackson's people realized how damaging this tape was and decided to edit out that part. Here's a thought - if they thought this tape was so incriminating, why didn't they just destroy it?

Of course, all of this conveniently explains why Janet Arvizo and all three of her children had nothing but glowing praises for Jackson when they were interviewed by social workers on February 20th, 2003. It's beyond me why Jackson would even bother to monitor the interview because, according to the prosecution's timeline, no molestation had occurred yet. Why would Jackson force the family to say that no sexual abuse had occurred when, even if we assume that he's guilty, no sexual abuse actually had occurred at that point? My head is starting to hurt.

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Forced to Go Shopping

After the DCFS interview, Jackson employee Vinnie Amen allegedly contacted Mrs. Arvizo and told her that her videotaped statement about Jackson was not convincing enough. As a result, she and her children would have to be shipped off to Brazil. Call me crazy but I'm not really seeing the cause and effect relationship here.

On February 21, Janet Arvizo returned to Neverland but was trapped in the guest house and forbidden from seeing her children. Several days later, Jackson had the family moved to a fancy hotel where they were allowed to make phonecalls, go on shopping sprees and go out for expensive meals. Fuck this, why can't I be kidnapped by Michael Jackson?

Mrs. Arvizo claimed that she and her children tried to escape from the hotel, but when they made a run for it, Frank Tyson "stood like an X on the thing of the elevator and made me and the children go back into the room." (Page 54, second day of testimony)

And while the nice kidnappers allowed her to use the phone, she didn't tell anybody that she was being held against her will:

Regarding her little shopping spree, Janet Arvizo had this to say:

So she was manipulated into going shopping. Makes perfect sense.

And now we get to my favourite part of the story. After kidnapping the Arvizo family, threatening them, forcing them to sign documents and make statements in his defense and just generally acting like an asshole, Michael Jackson did nothing to stop Janet Arvizo from contacting a civil lawyer. On February 25th, in the midst of the entire kidnapping plotline, Janet Arvizo met with attorney Bill Dickerman. And to make things even more ridiculous, it was one of Jackson's own employees who drove her to meet with him. Don't believe me? Read it for yourself:

Man, this is the worst heist ever. But before you go accusing Michael Jackson of being a dumbass, it should be noted that, according to Mrs. Arvizo, Jackson's henchmen were actually taking orders not from Jackson but from high profile defense attorney Mark Geragos:

What the fuck?!? So Geragos was willing to get involved in this conspiracy, risk being dibarred and possibly arrested just so that Michael Jackson could put together a stupid videotape? Okaaaaaaaaaay, moving on...

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The Conspiracy to Dump Urine

So here's the case so far: in February 2003, Michael Jackson, Mark Geragos, a business associate of Jackson's, two Neverland employees and two other attorneys conspired to kidnap a family and force them into making videotaped statements saying what a great guy Jackson is. Although the whole point of this conspiracy was to combat speculation that he was a child molester, Michael Jackson chose this exact time period to start molesting John Arvizo. This was after he'd known the kid for three years. He also allegedly plied John Arvizo and his brother with alcohol.

Although this was seemingly the perfect plan, a little problem arose when John Arvizo had to give a urine sample for a doctor's appointment. In an ingenious plot to prevent the doctor from detecting alcohol in the boy's system, Jackson allegedly had his henchman Vinne Amen dump the urine sample:

Well, that was a great plan especially when you consider how hard urine is to come by. It's not like John could have just - oh I don't know - pissed into a cup when he got to the hospital.

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Escape from Neverland: Part III

On March 11th, Janet Arvizo was scheduled to appear in court to demand an increase in child support and alimony. Although she was in the presence of a judge, she still did not make any mention of the fact that her children were being held hostage:

I guess since Vinne Amen was there intimidating her, she felt helpless. (Although I'm not really sure what he could have done to her in the middle of a friggin' court proceeding)

Finally, in mid-March, Mrs. Arvizo gathered up her courage and decided to take a stand against the forces of Neverland. With the help of her boyfriend Jay Jackson, Mrs. Arvizo devised the following plan:

I still like my idea of finding a payphone and calling the cops better but, hey, her plan worked. Mrs. Arvizo convinced Frank Tyson to bring the kids to her parents' house for just a few days and that was the end of their troubles. That was all it took to outsmart Michael Jackson's people? Wow.

Rather than use physical force to get the kids back to Neverland (like other kidnappers might have done) Jackson's "people" merely threatened to not return the items that they'd taken from Mrs. Arvizo's apartment (page 93, second day of testimony). What the hell kind of a threat is that? "Listen bitch, it's either your kids or your furniture, got it?"

And now for our final pop quiz. After a month of being kidnapped, harassed, stalked and threatened, you and your children finally escape. You:

a) Call the police and tell them you were kidnapped, harassed, stalked and threatened.
b) Decide to forget the whole thing

Let's find out what Janet Arvizo's response was:

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"I Don't Want the Devil's Money"

Apparently, Mrs. Arvizo wasn't that forgiving because she immediately sought the services of civil lawyer Bill Dickerman. Dickerman wrote numerous letters to Geragos demanding that he send to the Arvizos all of the statements that they had made in Jackson's defense as well as any copies that were produced. Gee, I wonder why these statements were of such importance to the Arvizo family. Could it be that this material would prove to be a huge problem if the Arvizos decided to sue Jackson for alleged sexual abuse?

Nah. Janet Arvizo isn't even interested in Michael Jackson's money:

In fact, according to Janet Arvizo, Michael Jackson is the one who stole from her:

Damn, I guess owning half of Sony's ATV catalogue isn't as profitable as one might imagine. I mean, stealing Timberland boots from some poor single mother? That's pretty low. Janet Arvizo seemed very upset about the loss of her boots:

As much as I'd love to respond to this with a sarcastic comment, I have no idea what she's talking about here. Popcorn kernels? Huh?

The question still remains why Janet Arvizo went to a civil lawyer if she wasn't interested in Michael Jackson's money. In fact, she went to two civil lawyers before the police ever got involved. The second civil lawyer also just happens to be the same man who represented Jackson's first accuser in 1993 and negotiated a multi-million dollar settlement between Jackson and the boy's family. Coincidentally enough, the Arvizo kids finally came forward with their claims of abuse after getting involved with Feldman and being told that their family could make millions if they went through with a lawsuit against Jackson.

So much for not wanting the devil's money.

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But Seriously...

It should be obvious to anybody with a functioning brain that Janet Arvizo is full of shit. Based on her own recollection of events, she had numerous opportunities to contact the police during her alleged kidnapping but never did. This leads me to believe that she was not, in fact, kidnapped and only came up with this ludicrous story to justify the fact that she and her children vehemently defended Jackson throughout February 2003 - the same month during which Jackson allegedly molested John Arvizo.

It suffices to say that the only reason why this case is going to trial is because District Attorney Tom Sneddon has been obsessed with Jackson ever since the 1993 case against the pop star fell apart. Since then, Sneddon has repeatedly spoken to the press about the Jackson case and even reopened the investigation on several occasions, solely because of unsubstantiated tabloid reports about other accusers. But even after an exhaustive eleven year pursuit of Jackson, this was all Sneddon could come up with - a family of con artists who have made dubious claims of sexual abuse for financial gain in the past.

But as anybody who has followed the Jackson case knows, if you have the mass media on your side (as well as a PR firm who admittedly uses the Associated Press to spread pro-prosecution stories) and a general public who are quick to assume the worst about somebody who doesn't adhere to societal norms, you can get the public to believe just about anything - even the non-sensical allegations against Michael Jackson.

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