Katherine Jackson, the mother of Michael Jackson, has filed a lawsuit against AEG Live, the concert giant that oversaw Jackson’s planned “This Is It” run at London’s O2 Arena, claiming the company was responsible for hiring Dr. Conrad Murray. The doctor has been charged with involuntary manslaughter for administering the sedative Propofol to Jackson on the night he died. “AEG demanded and required that Michael Jackson be treated by this particular doctor to ensure that Michael Jackson would attend all rehearsals and shows on the tour,” the lawsuit claims. “AEG, despite its knowledge of Michael Jackson’s physical condition, breached those duties by putting its desire for massive profits from the tour over the health and safety of Michael Jackson.” Producer Kenny Ortega, the director of Jackson’s This Is It film, was named among the defendants.
According to the suit, AEG Live also put Jackson under tremendous stress in the days leading up to his death, threatening to “pull the plug” on the entire concert run after Jackson missed a rehearsals, CNN reports. “They said it was to be ‘tough love’ and that they had read Jackson the ‘riot act,'” the lawsuit claims. At the rehearsals leading up to his death, Jackson was “freezing cold” and suffering “impaired memory, loss of appetite, dehydration, and absence of energy,” but he kept working. “AEG was well aware of his condition but did not postpone any rehearsals, nor did AEG relent in its demands that Jackson continue to maintain the grueling rehearsal schedule,” the suit said. “Rather than react reasonably and relax the rehearsal schedule so Michael Jackson could recuperate from his physical problems, AEG insisted that he attend every rehearsal in a grueling schedule, threatening that if he missed even one more, they would cancel the tour.” With Jackson unable to sleep, Murray allegedly administered the fatal dose of Propofol and other sedatives on June 25th, 2009.
The suit also blames AEG Live for not properly stocking Jackson’s home with the appropriate cardio-pulmonary resuscitation equipment and employing another nurse to oversee the singer. (Murray claims Jackson suffered cardiac arrest while the doctor left to use the bathroom; Jackson’s autopsy report stated that Murray lacked the necessary equipment needed when administering Propofol, which is usually reserved for hospital use.