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Michael Jackson Uses "Sick Note" To Avoid Contract Breach Trial

November 18, 2008 3:36 PM ET

Michael Jackson is reportedly too "sick" to travel to London to face a lawsuit over the $7 million he allegedly fleeced out of an Arab sheikh. According to Sheikh Abdulla bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the son of the king of Bahrain, Jackson signed a contract in 2006 that included a new album, autobiography and stage play, but failed to accomplish any of the three tasks before the singer demanded out of his new contract. However, Jacko kept the money, which the sheikh's lawyers said was used to "shore up Jackson's shaky finances and subsidize his lifestyle," and promptly left Bahrain.

Jackson alleges the money was given to him as a gift. As for Jackson going to the trial, "It would be unwise for him to travel, given what he's got now," lawyer Robert Englehart said, refusing to elaborate on "what he's got now." The sheikh legal team countered with "It's not the first time a sick note has been presented by Mr Jackson." As a compromise, Jackson is willing to give testimony via video link. Whatever the dollar amount Jackson managed to bilk out of Bahrain, it wasn't enough for the King of Pop to keep hold of his kingdom of Neverland, as the estate finally changed ownership last week after years on the brink of foreclosure.

Related Stories:
Michael Jackson Re-Releasing Thriller, Avoiding Bahrain
Michael Jackson at 50: His Four-Decade Career in Photos
Jackson News: Michael Out of Reunion, Janet Cancels Concert

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