Sources say Jackson to attend special hearing next week

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[b]Sources say Michael Jackson to attend special hearing next week[/b] LINDA DEUTSCH Associated Press SANTA MARIA, Calif. – Michael Jackson has decided to come to court Monday for the witness-stand appearance of the man prosecuting him for child molestation. Santa Barbara County District Attorney Tom Sneddon will be testifying in an unusual pretrial proceeding. Reliable sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, told The Associated Press Thursday that Jackson will be on hand for the session and many members of his family will be there to show support. Jackson was not required to attend and had filed with the court an advance waiver of his appearance. However, he made a last-minute decision to appear, the source said. It was not immediately known whether Jackson will be on hand for the balance of hearings that are supposed to last through the week. Parties in the case are under a strict gag order which prevents them from commenting. Sneddon was subpoenaed by Jackson’s defense team to testify about surveillance he personally conducted at the office of a private investigator who was working for Jackson’s former attorney, Mark Geragos. The investigator, Bradley Miller, was not in his Beverly Hills office when Sneddon went there and took photographs of the building and its roster of occupants. Santa Barbara County sheriff’s officials already have testified that they searched Miller’s office, using a sledge hammer to break in and seize videotapes and files relating to the Jackson case. The officials have maintained that they did not know Miller was employed by Geragos. Jackson’s current lawyer, Thomas Mesereau Jr., maintains that the Sheriff’s Department and Sneddon violated the attorney-client privilege of confidentiality by invading Miller’s office. They contend that everything seized from the office should be suppressed and not allowed in evidence at Jackson’s trial. Jackson is charged with committing a lewd act upon a child, administering an intoxicating agent and conspiring to commit child abduction, false imprisonment and extortion. He has pleaded not guilty and is free on $3 million bail. :nav Source:

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