A federal judge yesterday slapped pop star Michael Jackson with a $10,000 fine but spared him from arrest for failing to show up last month for a civil sex-abuse case.
The 2004 suit filed in New Orleans by Joseph Bartucci, a disabled 39-year-old, alleges he was held against his will and sexually assaulted by the entertainer during the 1984 World's Fair.
The singer's summons to appear in court July 20 fell through the cracks because it arrived on June 13, the day of the verdict in Jackson's recent child-molestation case, his new lawyer, Charles Gay, said.
"The order ... didn't get in the proper people's hands because of the chaos in Michael Jackson's life," said Gay.
But Judge Eldon Fallon fined him anyway.
"It strains my understanding of the facts that Mr. Jackson did not know of this matter," he huffed. Fallon said he would have ordered the pop star's arrest if Gay hadn't shown up yesterday.
Jackson's previous legal team quit because the singer failed to pay them, said attorney Kyle Schonekas, whose firm has sued Jackson for $46,000 in unpaid fees.
Bartucci's lawyer William (Bert) Pigg said he's prepared to take Jackson's deposition and bring the case to trial as soon as possible.
Bartucci, who previously sued a minister for sex abuse, says he was a 92-pound, 18-year-old in May 1984 when Jackson allegedly sexually and physically assaulted him during a limo ride from Louisiana to California and in an unknown building in California.
He "repressed" all memory of the abuse until he was watching a Court TV broadcast about child molestation allegations against Jackson in late November 2003, Pigg says.
Jackson's civil lawyer Brian Oxman has said Jackson was at the White House visiting then-President Ronald Reagan and Nancy Reagan on at least one of the dates Bartucci claims he was being abused.
Good. I'd laugh my ass off if those POS never got paid.
No matter who wins in Jackson vs. His Lawyers it is good.
Just a gaggle of people who deserve to suffer. Preferrably at each others hands.