Schaffel Admits to Taking Money from Account after Firing – MB#313

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Schaffel Admits to Taking Money from Account after Firing – MB#313 JULY 12 2006 – There was explosive testimony July 10 in the civil trial between Michael Jackson and Marc Schaffel. Schaffel is suing Jackson and Jackson is countersuing him. Under questioning by Jackson attorney Thomas Mundell, Schaffel admitted to writing 18 checks to use Jackson’s money for his own personal use. If that weren’t bad enough, the checks were written AFTER he was terminated from Jackson’s direct employ in Nov 2001. It gets worse. The checks were backdated by Schaffel to cover the fact he was writing them after he was fired; essentially trying to conceal what appears to be the theft of this money. According to the testimony, he was sent a letter of termination which he received on Nov 15 2001. So what did he do afterwards? Wrote a bunch of checks and dated them for before Nov 15. These 18 checks were included in the total amount of over three quarters of a million dollars within in the larger amount of money Schaffel claimed Jackson owed him or promised to give him. This is in direct contradiction to the lies media pundits have pushed to spread falsehoods about Jackson’s finances. Listening to the media and Schaffel, Jackson was in dire straights and needed Schaffel to help take care of him. Well now it turns out that it was the other way around, whether Jackson knew he was paying Schaffel’s bills or not. Certain online $hit-stirrers, for example, now appear to have been duped into believing Schaffel’s tale of intrigue about he and Jackson. Either that, or they have been outed as agenda pushing liars who used Schaffel’s accusations to back up what they already believed to be true. The revelation of Schaffel’s misdeeds comes after he was caught telling different stories about $300,000 he claimed he used per Jackson’s orders, but could provide one shred of evidence to backup the various accusations he has told about that same amount of money. Given the information we know now, it’s safe to say Schaffel may end up owing Jackson hundreds of thousands if not millions of dollars. According to the Associated Press (AP) in an article dated July 10 2006 titled “Jackson defense in lawsuit targets plaintiff’s backdated checks,” Schaffel was using Jackson’s money to pay his own rent, utilities and phone bills. From the AP:

Schaffel… testified in Superior Court that he wrote the checks for items including prepayment of $54,000 in rent on his home, prepayment of utilities and phone bills, and reimbursement for expenses such as camera rentals after he received the termination letter on Nov. 15, 2001. (see Jackson defense in lawsuit targets plaintiff’s backdated checks)

He should have effectively lost the right to write checks on accounts containing Jackson’s money the moment he was terminated. Mundell showed Schaffel one of the many checks he wrote to get some of Jackson’s money. More from the AP report:

Showing Schaffel one of the checks, Jackson attorney Thomas Mundell said, “And you dated it Nov. 14 because you knew if you dated it after that you would run into problems because of the termination?” “Yes,” said Schaffel. (see Jackson defense in lawsuit targets plaintiff’s backdated checks)

Having the audacity to sue Michael Jackson after he has taken (stolen?) hundreds of thousands of dollars is disgusting. Add to that the fact that he backdated 18 checks so his thieving ass wouldn’t get caught. Jackson’s attorney confronted Schaffel about these false records saying, “Isn’t it true you falsified books and records to try to get as much money as possible from Mr. Jackson before your termination?” (see Jackson defense in lawsuit targets plaintiff’s backdated checks ) Schaffel couldn’t provide a believable explanation after being caught like a rat on the witness stand. He claimed that Jackson agreed to pay his personal expenses for 6 moths before his termination. But as far as the public knows at the time of this writing, he hasn’t provided any type of documentation, records, etc showing that Jackson agreed to pay his rent, utilities or phone bills. Surprise, surprise. This appears to be more of the same: Schaffel makes a claim then provides no evidence to back it up. The claim that Jackson agreed to pay his personal expenses, however, smells like a lie considering that he backdated 18 checks to get the money. If Jackson had agreed to pay for Schaffel’s expenses for 6 months, why did he have to backdate the checks to get the money? Why not write then outright? Or why didn’t he simply write one check? If that doesn’t raise enough questions, the jury is sure to question why Schaffel would need to have Jackson pay his own personal living expenses for 6 months if he is also saying that Jackson was so broke that he had to lend the superstar money. Both things can’t be true. Jackson couldn’t have been “broke” and getting loans from someone, AND paying for their rent and utilities. So obviously Schaffel is either lying about why he swiped the money from Jackson, or he’s lying about loaning millions of dollars to Jackson. Or maybe he’s lying about both? Many observers called this news “stunning” because for months the public had been told all of these tales of Jackson’s finances, thanks to shadowy “sources”, about how Schaffel was paying for a “poor”, “broke”, and hungry Michael Jackson. The same “poor”, “broke” and hungry Jackson who was paying Schaffel’s bills – unbeknownst to him; paying $100,000 a month to an accounting firm who apparently wasn’t getting the job done or watching his accounts; paying various staff and associates to get projects completed which, to this day, remain unfinished. “Broke”, my ass. Some observers argue that the reason why Jackson may have appeared to have a cash flow problem at any time is because he had people like Schaffel getting money hand over fist, coupled with an accounting firm and managers not paying too much attention to suspicious activities on some of Jackson’s accounts. Tell me if you would still have a job in an accounting firm if 18 backdated checks – totaling $190,000 going to some guy who had already been fired – got past you? And what do the media have to say to all of this? As I flipped through the cable channels last night and the night before, checking show after show, you could have heard a pin drop on the issue of these latest bombshells. No Howard King on Nancy (dis)Grace’s show proclaiming they will own Neverland. No speculation from hack reporters trying their damnedest to convince us all that Jackson is in the wrong. Not even a half-backed talk about mythical boys in Brazil. It was as if somebody switched off the lights and the spin no longer became worth it because Schaffel’s seemingly illegal activities would also have to be talked about. It’s especially strange considering certain online entities appeared to have made it their mission to peddle some of the most absurd garbage dressed up as news which I and a number of observers have read concerning Jackson’s finances. These types of reporters with their various platforms were targeted by Schaffel’s side to spread his version of the story without question. If a “crook” makes a claim about money, and it’s negative towards Jackson, it doesn’t automatically make the claim true. Unfortunately a few hungry snake-bitten “Jackson crack-heads” didn’t want to make room for that possibility. I’m not naming names on purpose, but you’ll probably recognize these types of “reporters” by how furious they may try to talk themselves out of being one of the ones who originally pushed Schaffel’s tall tales; tales they previously slopped up like dogs at feeding time. __Mundell focused like a laser on Schaffel’s questionable behavior__ None of the media’s actions have phased Thomas Mundell, Jackson’s attorney, at all. He continued to show the jury something Schaffel couldn’t provide: documents and records. And he continued to draw the jury’s attention to various contradictions in Schaffel’s testimony. One such contradiction involved Schaffel’s testimony about the closeness of his friendship to Jackson after he was terminated. According to his previous testimony, Schaffel said he remained friends with Jackson after his termination, frequently talking to him about different projects. However, Mundell showed the jury an email to contradict that assertion. The email was written by Schaffel to the man who initially introduced him to Jackson, Dr. Arnie Klein. In it, Schaffel laments the loss of Jackson’s friendship. From the AP report:

But Mundell produced an e-mail written by Schaffel to the man who introduced him to Jackson, Dr. Arnie Klein, which seemed to contradict that assertion. The e-mail written on Jan. 30, 2002, said, “I am deeply saddened this has cost my friendship with Michael Jackson. … I was the only one willing to fight for him all the time. I miss being able to help him. I miss my friend. All our projects have come to a stop.” (see Jackson defense in lawsuit targets plaintiff’s backdated checks)

Hum…now, was this email written before or after he claimed he was so close to Jackson that he was sent to Brazil to help Jackson adopt kids? Did he really miss being able to help Jackson, or did he miss being able to help himself to Jackson’s money? Some observers say the email almost reads like Schaffel trying to appeal to Klein to help him get back into Jackson’s good graces. What’s also interesting is how everybody thrown from the gravy train always think they were the “only one” willing to fight for Jackson. There have been other gravy train rejects who have also claimed they were the “only one” looking out for Jackson too……until they filed their lawsuit. __Another $300,000 story__ There have been many stories about this mysterious $300,000 allegedly handled by Schaffel. He’s told various stories about this money. According to prior reports from the Associated Press, Schaffel previously claimed he withdrew the money from an account in Budapest, and took it to Brazil to buy a condo (see Jackson lawyer targets lack of documentation for money claims ). Then he claimed he withdrew the money from an account in Brazil and supposedly took it to “Mr. X” in Argentina on Jackson’s behalf. Jackson flat out denied having anything to do with whatever the hell Schaffel was doing in South America with $300,000. Monday (July 10) Schaffel claimed on the stand that he had the money in a safe in Brazil and that’s the money he used to give to “Mr. X”. I have the feeling that “Mr. X” is nonexistent and Schaffel is using an intentionally unverifiable story to justify asking for money from Jackson. Not only are the different version of this story absurd, it also conflicts with irrefutable details of the situation at the time. He’s going to have to drop one of the stories he’s telling. Let’s follow Schaffel’s trail of stories for a minute. Schaffel is claiming Jackson agreed to pay for his living expenses. So that would mean Schaffel wasn’t financially able to do himself. He has also claimed Jackson was “broke”. So he would have to give Jackson hundreds of thousands of dollars at a time. Thus if Schaffel wants jurors to believe Jackson needed $300,000 from him, he will have to explain how Jackson also had enough money to pay Schaffel’s own rent, utilities and phone bills for 6 months. Schaffel’s maze of unverified, unfounded claims is something of which he apparently can’t talk his way out of, especially under questioning from Mundell. Sadly for media pundits, this $300,000 claim has gotten so convoluted with conflicting claims from Schaffel, that it seems all the fun has been taken out of speculating about it on their part. Boo hoo. __Zia Modabber testifies about Schaffel__ One of Jackson’s former attorneys, Zia Modabber, testified July 10 about breaking the news to Jackson concerning Schaffel’s porn past. He says Jackson was not aware of Schaffel’s background. According to the AP article dated July 10 titled “Witness: Jackson ‘angry, upset’ at associate’s past in gay porn,” Modabber met with Jackson in the middle of the night to break the news to him. At first, Jackson didn’t want to believe him, Modabber testified, so he showed Jackson the videotaped evidence of Schaffel directing a gay porn scene. From the AP report:

“Can you describe Mr. Jackson’s reaction?” asked Thomas Mundell, who is defending Jackson against Schaffel’s claims that the pop star still owes him $1.6 million. “I think he didn’t want to believe it was real or true,” said Modabber. “He appeared angry, upset.” (see Witness: Jackson ‘angry, upset’ at associate’s past in gay porn)

What’s interesting is that this isn’t the first time Jackson didn’t want to believe some of the things he was being told about people around him. Remember the hell-raising Arvizo children? More than a few people who have amicably transitioned from Jackson’s employ have said in various interviews that Jackson wants to believe the best about people instead of being constantly suspicious of his employees’ motives. Or at least, that’s the way he used to be. Modabber’s testimony also focused on what the Associated Press called a “blizzard of letters” between Schaffel’s lawyer and himself during and after the time Schaffel was terminated. It turns out Schaffel was holding up the release of the charity song, ‘What More Can I Give’ by claiming he had rights to sell and make money from it. Jackson confirmed in his taped deposition that he himself was the composer of the song. Modabber testified he found out Schaffel was negotiating with a Japanese company to sell the rights to the mater recording of the song without Jackson’s knowledge or permission. This alleged crook was trying to sell Jackson’s music right from under him! Specifically from Modabber’s July 10 testimony:

He told how his efforts led to a Japanese company that was negotiating with Schaffel, unbeknownst to Jackson, for the rights to the master recording of the song. Modabber’s letters continually warned that Schaffel “has no rights to exploit, distribute or in any way pledge any interest in the master recording of ‘What More Can I Give.'” But he said that Schaffel went ahead and at one point collected $900,000 from the company, Music Fighters. He said the company essentially received nothing. (see Witness: Jackson ‘angry, upset’ at associate’s past)

$900,000. He got nine hundred thousand freakin’ dollars. That’s almost a million dollars he received. So, fast forwarding in time, why would he need Jackson paying his rent and utilities for 6 months, according to him, before his termination in Nov 2001? Is he lying to cover his tail? Greed is a bi+ch, ain’t it? __You can’t always get what you want__ Zia Modabber continued his testimony yesterday (July 11) where he said he tried to warn the Japanese company, Music Fighters, not to engage in any deals with Schaffel. He testified that they went ahead and tried to acquire the song from Schaffel anyway, and even planned to stage a concert tour, according to the Associated Press article dated July 11 titled “Former Jackson lawyer testified on ill-fated charity record”. The popular folklore is that this charity song was held up by Sony because of Schaffel’s gay porn past. Well that may not be the entire story. It looks like one of the main reasons the song was halted was because of Schaffel’s side-dealing, leading to Jackson’s attorney’s efforts to straighten out the mess Schaffel was creating by asserting and trying to sell rights to the song which he didn’t have. Of the Japanese company, Modabber told the jury he “was to find out who they were and whether they were legitimate people to negotiate with. I never got to the bottom of it.” He also testified that “because of complications involving Schaffel’s firing…the planned release of the record was held up” (see Former Jackson lawyer testifies on ill-fated charity record ). He confirmed that Schaffel owned the master recording. But he also instructed Music Fighters that without Jackson’s participation and permission, whatever they thought they were buying from Schaffel was worthless. Why would any deal without Jackson’s cooperation and participation be worthless? It’s worthless because Schaffel only owned the master, not the publishing rights, performance rights, or songwriting rights. And he couldn’t do anything to get money for any reason other than charity as per the final agreement between him and Jackson. In essence, all he owned was a tape, which he couldn’t do anything with unless he got permission from the writer and holder of the publishing and performance rights. And, you guessed it! The writer and holder of the publishing and performance rights is Michael Jackson. The Associated Press reported more details about Modabber’s testimony:

Modabber replied, “I believe I let them know that without Mr. Jackson what they were buying was worthless.” He said he had instructions to get a “clean transfer” of the rights to the master recording of “What More Can I Give” and have the song released for charity. “We didn’t want money going to Mr. Schaffel,” he said. “We wanted money going to pay the bills and to charity, but not to Mr. Schaffel, given what had happened.” (see Former Jackson lawyer testifies on ill-fated charity record)

Because Schaffel was engaged in getting almost a million dollars for reasons outside of the agreement, he appeared to have breached whatever agreement he made about his involvement with the charity song. Needless to say, this agreement was made before they found out about Schaffel’s x-rated past. More from the AP article:

“Yes, he owned the master but it was not his to sell anywhere and put the money in his pocket. He had to use it within the purpose of the agreement, which was for charity,” the witness said. (see Former Jackson lawyer testifies on ill-fated charity record)

Modabber testified that Schaffel was supposed to pay for the production. He found out Jackson was the one who paid for the production of the project. The attorney said it was his job to terminate the business relationship because Schaffel “had not performed under the agreement”. Under cross-examination, Schaffel attorney Howard King made a snarky comment about Modabber looking for reasons to terminate Schaffel. Moddabber shot back “I began looking into it and found he had not paid the expenses.” Modabber didn’t have to look for a “reason”. “Reasons” were all around them. __Beware of snake-bitten prosecutors__ If Schaffel wants to play the ‘boy’ card, he could be opening up an entirely different can of worms. According to previous reports, Schaffel lied about…uh, I mean, claimed he delivered $300,000 of his own money to “Mr. X” in Argentina. Pro-prosecution media pundits began speculating that it was to “pay off” the family of another phantom ‘boy’ to keep him from talking to prosecutors in 2003. Well, if he wants the public or the jury to believe that claim, wouldn’t that also mean he was engaging in witness tampering and hindering a police investigation? The prosecution in the Jackson “case” was full of crap and tried to put an innocent man behind bars. But they are nothing if not vindictive. If they go after Schaffel, he would be dealing with a criminal case of his own. And if they investigate only to find out the apparent truth – that there is no “Mr. X” in Argentina having anything to do with Jackson – Schaffel will still be on the hook for perjuring himself during a civil investigation; lying on the stand under oath in order to get money from Jackson. I think the persecution…I mean, prosecution of Jackson was disgusting. However, whatever hang-ups Schaffel finds himself dealing with in the future, he will only have himself to blame. Just ask Janet Arvizo, who is being prosecuted for welfare fraud and perjury in Los Angeles county. __Street-smart Rule #5: Don’t try to sue people you’ve stolen from__ Based on reports from the courtroom observers, Jackson’s lawyers have thus far proven that Schaffel engaged in self-dealing, kept false books of account, concealed and misappropriated funds, and wrongfully profited from being associated with Jackson. There are a few questions which need to be answered. What happened to the $900,000 out of which Schaffel screwed that Japanese company? Is it in a Brazilian bank account or locked in a safe too? If one believes Schaffel’s own words, he certainly wasn’t acting at Jackson’s behest to broker the Japanese deal. Jackson was allegedly “broke” according to Schaffel, remember? So where did the money go? Oh, if only he had the nerve to claim he gave it to Jackson! What did the Japanese company get for their approx. million dollars? Absolutely nothing. Surprise, surprise. Was Schaffel lying about giving Jackson money or was he lying about why he took $784,000 – some through backdated checks – out of Jackson’s account AFTER he was fired? This isn’t a he-said/he-said civil suit. This is more like a ‘Schaffel-said/Jackson-has-proven’ civil suit. The jury has now been presented with evidence of “the crook Schaffel” seemingly engaging in illegalities with regards to his association with Jackson. Let’s see. That’s $900,000 he apparently wrongfully received from the Japanese company, plus the money he swiped from Jackson’s account with backdated checks, plus lord knows what else the jury hasn’t yet heard about. What it equals is Schaffel in boiling water all the way up to his non-existent hairline. When Jackson’s lawyer said Schaffel should have left well enough alone instead of pursuing this lawsuit, he wasn’t lying. Stay turned for further updates as they are made available. -MJEOL

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