Jackson counter-sues former aid

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[b]Jackson counter-sues former aid[/b] October 27, 2005 LOS ANGELES: Pop icon Michael Jackson, emerging from the shadow of his child molestation trial, on Wednesday countersued a former aide for allegedly concealing and misappropriating more than $US1 million. The lawsuit filed in Los Angeles marks the second salvo in a sudden flurry of legal activity by Jackson as he re-emerges into public view following his acquittal on child sex charges in June. Jackson … sued former associate Marc Schaffel, who testified for the prosecution at Jackson’s child sex trial [TSCM Note: Schaffel never actually testified at the trial] and who also has a career as a prolific producer of gay pornography. Schaffel had sued Jackson in November 2004 seeking more than $US3 million in allegedly unpaid loans and other debts. In his cross-complaint, Jackson contends that he entered into a written agreement with Schaffel in August 2001 to produce his song What More Can I Give?. Schaffel also registered a business called Neverland Valley Entertainment, an apparent reference to Jackson’s Neverland Ranch. The proceeds after expenses and a small royalty for Schaffel, who agreed to pay for all costs, were to go to charity, according to the cross-complaint. But Schaffel failed to pay production costs, according to Jackson. Then after learning that Schaffel had produced and directed 400 gay porn films under different aliases, Jackson fired him from the project in November 2001 because he did not want Schaffel’s other occupations to adversely affect the success of the song, according to the court papers. Jackson alleges that after the agreement ended, Schaffel falsely represented himself as affiliated with the pop star, receiving a $US500,000 fee and $US500,000 dollars for expenses from Music Fighters Co in Japan without reporting it to Jackson. Schaffel “concealed funds, comingled funds, misappropriated funds, charged expenses for matters un-related to the agreement, provided false books of account and … wrongfully profited,” the cross-complaint alleges. Jackson also claims Schaffel kept $US250,000 in sculptures and paintings from artist Romero Britto in 2003 that were supposed to be delivered to the pop star. … But Jackson attorney Brent Ayscough said Wednesday that Schaffel had failed in two attempts to get a prejudgment attachment lien placed on Jackson’s Neverland Ranch in California’s Santa Barbara County, north of Los Angeles. On Monday, Ayscough announced that Jackson, 47, had settled a lawsuit brought against him by an antiques firm for allegedly failing to fully pay up for a $US380,000 furniture. Source: Daily Telegraph Post Your Comments?

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