LOS ANGELES — Following a verdict earlier this month that cleared Michael Jackson’s concert promoter of wrongful death, the Jackson family attorney said their next move will be to sue the singer’s 2.3 billion fans.
Jackson’s mother Katherine Jackson and his three children — Prince, Paris and Blanket — had sued AEG Live, the company that hired Conrad Murray, the doctor who provided Jackson with a lethal dose of propofol to was intended to treat the singer’s insomnia. The family was asking for a paltry 1.5 billion dollars in compensation.
“The verdict clears the path to sue the most culpable party in the death of their beloved son and father,” said Ryan Banish, the family’s lawyer. “I am referring to those maniacal, obsessed fans who shelled out a hundred bucks to see the aging performer make a sad attempt to imitate his former self, pushing him past his physical limits, obliging him to take what amounted to horse tranquilizers to get a decent night’s sleep. You people have blood on your hands.”
If found guilty, Jackson’s 2.3 billion fans could be ordered to pay fines equal to the amounts they have spent on Michael Jackson merchandise going back to 1982, when Jackson released his hit song “Billie Jean.” This includes money spent on concert tickets, tapes, CDs, posters, and sequined gloves.
The money spent on all Jackson merchandise — officially licensed, pirated, or custom-made — is estimated to be close to a trillion dollars, said Banish, which is the amount the family will be seeking.
“And a trillion dollars is but a trifle compared to the loss of the universe’s biggest star.”
Banish said the family is also considering filing a suit against the culture of celebrity worship, but further research needs to be done to determine which court deals with such legal actions.