Doctor Charged in Jackson Death Fights to Keep Medical License

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As Dr. Conrad Murray's April 5th hearing approaches, lawyers representing Michael Jackson's personal physician have filed legal papers fighting the California Attorney General and medical board's attempts to have his medical license revoked in the state, citing financial difficulties. "[Murray] is, without fear of overstatement, hanging on by a thread," his attorney wrote in court papers filed yesterday. "His ability to pay for his own defense depends almost entirely on his ability to continue to treat patients." Murray also owes money in child support payments and his employees' salaries, the AP reports.

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As Rolling Stone previously reported, Murray pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter charges stemming from Jackson's 2009 death, which was ruled a homicide after the singer died of "acute Propofol intoxication." While losing his medical license in California won't affect Murray's finances immediately — he has no patients or clinics in the state — Murray fears the California's medical board ruling would have a "domino effect" in states where he does practice, namely Texas and Nevada.

In fact, the impact of California's move against Murray has already reached Nevada, where the medical board filed a formal complaint against Murray alleging that the doctor failed to report delinquent payments in his child support when filing to renew his medical license. According to the AP, the complaint could result in the revocation of Murray's Nevada medical license. The verdict in that case isn't expected until September. "If Dr. Murray is unable to practice medicine in Texas, and especially Nevada, he will likely be faced with the inability to adequately defend himself of the charges facing him in the Superior Court of California," Murray's lawyers wrote, adding that since the trial involves "the death of an internationally famous decedent," the legal dues will be "considerable."

In addition to administering Jackson Propofol, a powerful sedative usually reserved for hospital use, court papers have also revealed that Murray is accused of halting resuscitation attempts on Jackson in order to hide vials of sedatives before paramedics and investigators arrived at Jackson's home. At the April 5th hearing, a judge will likely be appointed to Murray's involuntary manslaughter case and a preliminary trial date will be set.

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