LOS ANGELES (KABC) — A video deposition has become a key piece of evidence in the civil trial over the death of pop star Michael Jackson.
Jackson’s tour was a sellout. Had he lived, attorneys for his family say the superstar could have earned $1 billion in the rest of his career.
For the last week, jurors have viewed Jackson performing. They have also viewed video clips of AEG Live CEO Paul Gongaware, a defendant in the lawsuit.
In the video, Gongaware responds to questions about an email the plaintiffs say shows AEG hired Conrad Murray, the physician whose treatments for insomnia led to Jackson’s death.
The plaintiffs are playing clips to highlight how the defendant’s answers change. In one of them, Gongaware cancels Jackson’s insurance for the tour saying, “If we don’t get sickness coverage, we are dropping the policy.”
In the video, jurors hear Gongaware say a familiar phrase, “I don’t remember this message.”
Yet Thursday, Gongaware says he does remember now, testifying that the health coverage wasn’t worth it and that it would require a medical exam that Jackson didn’t want.
The aim of the Jackson attorneys, according to legal analyst Barry Edwards, is to raise a trust question.
The Jackson attorneys say AEG’s conduct shows that there was an implicit contract between AEG and Murray even though no deal was signed.
Gongaware testified that Jackson hired Murray and that none of the emails or alleged warnings had anything to do with his death, which he said was the result of an overdose of the sedative propofol.