Jackson accuser coached to lie by mom in court case: legal assistant

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[b]Jackson accuser coached to lie by mom in court case: legal assistant[/b] SANTA MARIA, United States (AFP) – A legal assistant told jurors that the mother of Michael Jackson’s child sex trial accuser appeared to have coached her children to lie under oath in a lawsuit. Paralegal Mary Elizabeth Holzer testified that the mother of the now 15-year-old accuser told her she was worried her youngest son would not remember what he was supposed to tell doctors involved in a civil suit. The family had accused US department store JC Penney security guards of hurting them and of sexually assaulting the mother when she and her children was detained on suspicion of shoplifting in 1998. Jackson’s lawyers say the woman is a “professional plaintiff” with a history of encouraging her children to lie under oath in order to win cash settlements. Holzer, who worked for an attorney that once represented the family, said she accompanied the family to a doctor’s examination to take account of their alleged injuries. The mother had insisted on being present during a doctor’s examination of the boys and had told Holzer that while she was certain the oldest boy would “get the story straight” she could not be certain the younger one would remember to tell the story as the family had rehearsed it, Holzer said. The witness also recalled the mother telling her the children were taking acting classes. “She wanted them to become good actors so they could tell then what to say, how to behave,” Holzer told the court. After the examination, the mother “threw herself down on the ground kicking and screaming”, saying the doctor and nurse were “the devil” and that they “were all out to get her.” The family later won an out-of-court settlement worth more than 150,000 from JC Penney. Under the deal, the mother was awarded 32,000, the accuser was given 25,000, his younger brother got 8,000, but the woman’s now ex-husband refused to accept any part of the money, Holzer said. Source: http://uk.news.yahoo.com/050524/323/fjocf.html

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