A judge has dismissed the lawsuit brought by a choreographer who alleged Michael Jackson molested him as a child. The move resolves one of the last major claims against the late singer’s holdings.
Judge Mitchell L. Beckloff’s summary judgment ruling against the now-35-year-old Wade Robson found that the two Jackson-owned corporations, which were the remaining defendants in the case, were not liable for Robson’s exposure to Jackson. He did not rule on the credibility of Robson’s allegations themselves.
Robson’s lawyer, Vince Finaldi, said he strongly disagrees and plans to appeal.
Robson, an Australian, has worked with Britney Spears and NSYNC. He met Jackson when he was 5 years old.
He testified in Jackson’s defence at the singer’s 2005 criminal trial. He said he had spent the night at Jackson’s Neverland Ranch more than 20 times. He specified he usually slept in Jackson’s room, but Jackson never molested him. Jackson was acquitted in that trial.
Then in 2013 about four years after the singer’s death, he filed a lawsuit against the singer. He sued the Jackson estate for what his lawyers described as molestation that spanned a seven-year period.
A court ruled in 2015 that Robson had filed his lawsuit too late to get any of Jackson’s estate. That left two remaining defendants, both corporate entities owned by Jackson in his lifetime: MJJ Productions, Inc., and MJJ Ventures, Inc.
The judge ruled on 19 December that those two corporate defendants could not be held responsible for Robson’s exposure to Jackson, the way a school or the Boy Scouts can be found liable for bringing together an abusive adult and a child victim.
Finaldi reportedly said that the Jackson camp’s interest in the truth was “hollow”.
“If someone’s trying to search for the truth, why not let the lawsuit proceed?” Finaldi added.
“Why not exonerate him and let a jury decide”.