Michael Jackson and his camp are dismissing as "malicious" and "false" claims by an 18-year-old man who has sold his story of abuse to a British tabloid.
News of the World purchased Daniel Kapon's half-hour videotape, on which he alleges Jackson had drugged, molested and videotaped him during trips to the Jackson family home in Encino, California, as well as at Neverland Ranch. Kapon claims the abuse started when he was 3 and continued for six years. A Jackson spokesperson said the tape was being offered for nearly a half a million dollars when it first surfaced a month and a half ago.
"This appears to be a malicious attempt to undermine Mr. Jackson's right to a fair hearing on the charges presently pending," Jackson's lawyers said in a statement. "We have to question the timing and purpose of this false allegation being raised at this time. We believe that this smear campaign is driven by money-hungry lawyers seeking to capitalize on Mr. Jackson's current legal situation."
Kapon claims his allegations were prompted by a repressed memory that was recovered while under a psychiatrist's care. That psychiatrist is said to be Dr. Carole Lieberman, and Kapon's lawyer is said to be Gloria Allred. Lieberman and Allred previously filed complaints against Jackson with the Department of Children and Family Services following his infamous baby-dangling incident (see "Michael Jackson Tells Attorney To 'Go To Hell' "). Lieberman declined to comment, and Allred was unavailable for comment.
Los Angeles authorities issued a press release when allegations first surfaced in mid-April, stating that they are looking into the Kapon's claims. Santa Barbara authorities declined to comment, citing the gag order in the Jackson case (see "Media, Attorneys Fight Over Access In Michael Jackson Case").
For full coverage of the Michael Jackson case, see "Michael Jackson Accused."