Arvizo Charged with Defrauding Welfare System – MB#282 Update

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Arvizo Charged with Defrauding Welfare System, Facing Jail Time – MB#282 Update Recommended bail is set at $5o,000; Arraignment set for Sept 7 AUGUST 24 2005 – Janet Arvizo, the mother of the accuser in the Michael Jackson trial, has been charged with 5 felony counts of welfare fraud and perjury. It’s nice to know there are actually officials in power who have enough cojones to look at the facts and prosecute someone who has actually committed a crime, instead of going after Jackson. Jackson was acquitted on all 14 counts – 10 felony counts and 4 misdemeanor counts – on June 13 2005. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Bureau of Fraud and Corruption Prosecution filed felony charges Tuesday (August 23) saying the felonious fraud hid hundreds of thousands of dollars from the welfare system while claiming she was indigent. The news broke with not even half the amount of attention the broadcast media devoted to Jackson when police invaded his Neverland Ranch looking for evidence that never existed. There were no 10 – 15 minute segments talking about this breaking news story. No breaking into programming of the networks to report the news of Arvizo being charged. No live reports outside of the Arvizos’ house. And no string of inane, speculative conversations with people who know very little about the facts of the case. I can only assume the aforementioned treatment is only reserved for negative Michael Jackson stories. Disgusting as that now-fading reality is, the online print media are all over this story, as they should be. Already they have reported comments by Jackson attorney Thomas Mesereau, Brian Oxman and even the sly William (Bill) Dickerman. Arvizo and those who support her, like civil attorney Dickerman, only have Arvizo’s greed to blame for these latest charges. If you paid attention at all to the actual Jackson trial, you would have noticed that Jackson’s defense team presented ample evidence to prove Arvizo did in fact violate the law. The spokesperson for the Los Angeles D.A.’s office, Sandi Gibbon, says the charges resulted from a thorough investigation: “These charges are the result of a very careful investigation of allegations that she basically lied to receive aid…We felt the evidence was sufficient to file these counts” (see Mom of Michael Jackson’s accuser charged with fraud). In his opening argument, current Santa Barbara D.A. Tom Sneddon himself said Arvizo would admit she had committed welfare fraud. That was probably before she figured out Sneddon couldn’t protect her from charges in Los Angeles County; before she chickened-out and wouldn’t testify until she was allowed by Judge Rodney Melville to plead the 5th to questions involving her apparent illegal activity. She received money from welfare, while receiving money from a J.C. Penney lawsuit, and from Michael Jackson. Who knows who else gave her money during that time as well. The problem is that she didn’t bother to tell any of this to Los Angeles County. On top of this, Gavin Arvizo’s medical bills were reportedly paid 100% by his father’s health insurance while financial support was apparently pouring in from celebrities; support supposedly for medical bills which didn’t exist. According to the Felony Complaint for Arrest Warrant documents obtained by, Arvizo’s recommended bail is $50,000 and her arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 7 2005. Let’s see how many reporters show up for that. If Arvizo fails to show, a warrant will be issued for her arrest. __Mesereau speaks out__ Tom Mesereau has spoken out about Arvizo’s felony charges. According to him, Jackson has been made aware of the charges against the woman whose family he tried to help; the woman whose family tried to put him in jail for an alleged “crime” which never happened. He told Reuters that he’s always said the case against Jackson was fraudulent. According to a Reuters August 23 2005 report titled “Mom of Michael Jackson’s accuser charged with Fraud”, Mesereau told Senddon of this information early on during the case. From the report:

“I have always maintained that the case against Michael Jackson was a fraud and a disgrace and these charges confirm that,” Mesereau told Reuters. “We brought this information to District Attorney Sneddon early on in the case hoping that he would dismiss the charges against Michael Jackson,” he said. “Unfortunately he was stubborn and denied our request.” (see Mom of Jackson’s accuser charged with fraud – Mesereau Comments (August 23 2005))

It was their stubborn nature which caused them to run head-first off the cliff that was the Michael Jackson “case”. I wouldn’t be surprised if other people tried to warn the prosecution about the felonious activities in which the Arvizos were involved. Mesereau also talked to CNN about these latest developments which brought more depth to the situation. He said “certain individuals” prematurely reported the mother’s welfare fraud to Los Angeles County because he wanted her to testify at trial. Mesereau told CNN he wanted the so-called mother to take the stand so he could cross-examine her about the fraud. But after word got out someone presented the information to the proper authorities in Los Angeles county, she threatened to pull out of testifying – which led to her pleading the 5th. Hence, hindering his full access to ask her questions. He says he later learned that Arvizo initially refused to testify for the prosecution for weeks until she was talked into it by the prosecution. Melville allowed her to get on the stand to make allegations against Jackson AND be protected from defense questioning on the fraud issue. Regardless of how prosecutors tried to hide the full truth from the jury, it looks like Arvizo’s past has finally caught up with her. Fortunately for us all she was talked back into testifying. Otherwise, we may not have ever known about the depth to which the lies of this family went. From the August 23 2005 CNN article titled “Jackson accuser’s mom charged with fraud”:

“I wanted her to take that witness stand, so I could cross-examine her. I did not want anyone to report her to the welfare authorities until the trial was over,” he said. However, Mesereau said “certain individuals went behind my back and reported her, anyway. In my opinion, this was a supreme act of incompetence and had the potential for severely hurting the defense.” (see Jackson accuser’s mom charged with fraud)

Though Mesereau did not name names as to who reported the mother, Brian Oxman – another attorney who has worked for the Jackson family – told CNN it was he who collected the fraud information on Arvizo and turned the info over to another attorney who then took it to the proper authorities. For them, the prosecution’s request – and Melville’s allowance – for Arvizo to plead the 5th and testify may ultimately have been their worst decision next to actually pursuing this “case” against Jackson in the first place. Probably like most people who heard this news, Mesereau told CNN he’s not surprised at the charges “particularly in light of the testimony during the trial.” __Dreams of a civil suit slip away__ The civil attorney — with whom Arvizo appeared to be as thick as thieves — has made some asinine comments about the latest developments. A report from the LA Times includes comments from Dickerman who claims the mother’s “ordeal” could deter “other victims” from pursing criminal charges against celebrities. I ask, in what world?? First, there was no “victim” in this trial, no matter how much Dickerman whines. His attempts to save a fading civil suit aren’t going over too well. Second, if he’s looking for someone to blame, he should blame his felonious client (ex-client?). Without her apparent crimes, he wouldn’t have to worry about any of this. He can’t blame her actions on Jackson. Third, a real victim would have called the police FIRST, not gone to numerous lawyers before retaining him. What’s more interesting about Dickerman’s involvement is it came out in court that the Arvizos were taken to meet with him and Jamie Masada during the time they all claimed they were being held hostage by the big bad Jackson “kidnappers”. As a matter of fact, according to Masada’s testimony, Dickerman was with the family early enough for them to try to “persuade” the networks from re-broadcasting the Martin Bashir so-called “documentary”. So we’re talking early Feb 2003. What kind of kidnapper takes their hostages to meet with a civil attorney during their captivity?? Dickerman came to our attention for two reasons. One, because he was reportedly refusing to testify at a pretrial hearing until Melville threatened him with arrest for not abiding by a subpoena (see Civil Lawyer Refusing to Testify in Court? – MJEOL Bullet #171). The second was because of his involvement in “Miller-Gate”. Remember that big blow up about who knew P.I. Bradley Miller was working for a defense witness, when they knew it, and how prosecutors may have illegally invaded the defense camp? It was reported August 19 2004 that in a pretrial hearing — a time when Steve Cochran was still working for Jackson – Dickerman admitted he knew Miller worked for Mark Geragos in his grand jury testimony. He later claimed he didn’t know, according to reports. He was caught telling two different stories at two different times, again, according to the reports. Oh, but the ridiculous comments didn’t end there. He also told the L.A. Times: “It’s unfortunate that the rich and famous can buy attorneys to twist and obfuscate the facts and that the less fortunate of us can’t” (see Felony Charges Filed Against Mother of Jackson’s Accuser). Ha! So now it’s the fault of the ‘rich and famous’ which caused Arvizo to steal from taxpayers! The fact is that Arvizo was receiving welfare, lied on the forms about other financial support she was receiving, and was sitting on top of some $30,000 in her bank account from the JC Penney lawsuit. That’s not a twisted or obfuscated fact. It’s fortunate for Jackson that he could afford to defend himself against the false allegations brought against him by Dickerman’s lying clients. Now THAT’S a fact he should have learned by now. Dickerman’s upset that “it does not seem proper” his client is facing jail time for her proven fraud, but Jackson’s a free man. It seems to me that it “doesn’t seem proper” the way his client (ex-client?) had her hand out and collecting money for non-existent medical bills. It “doesn’t seem proper” how she used her cancer-striken son at the time to get her hands on people’s money apparently under false pretenses. In short, I think Dickerman is full of $hit. In case he missed it, Jackson went through 4 months of mental and emotional hell, and was acquitted on all charges for an alleged “crime” that never occurred. We can’t say that about Janet Arvizo. This type of action against Arvizo may weed out other crooks who could say to themselves, ‘Hey, every other fraudulent scam I ran in the past could come out if I try to run this big one. Maybe I shouldn’t destroy someone’s reputation for something that never happened?’ If one person is saved from unnecessary torment, then so much the better. As for his ludicrous statements about causing other “victims” not to prosecute celebrities, the Arvizo’s aren’t “victims” of Jackson. And to put this family in the same category with people who have actually suffered a crime is ridiculous. The people of the state of California were screwed out of almost $19,000 which could have gone to families who ACTUALLY NEEDED that money. Her activities are catching up with her and that’s not Jackson’s fault. Someone should alert Joseph Bartucci. Stay tuned. -MJEOL

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