Michael Jackson drops lawsuit against accountants

Thu May 1, 2008 7:45pm EDT
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Pop star Michael Jackson has dropped a lawsuit against an accounting firm he had accused of making deals and hiring people without his permission, according to court papers obtained on Thursday.

The papers, filed on April 14, did not say whether Jackson had reached a settlement with the firm or dropped the litigation for another reason.

Jackson, through his production company, MJJ Productions Inc., sued the accounting firm of Bernstein, Fox, Whitman, Goldman and Sloan in December 2006, alleging negligence and breach of fiduciary duty.

The lawsuit alleged the firm did not pay workers' compensation payments on his behalf in 2004 and 2005 and was late paying taxes he owed, in addition to hiring people and entering into contracts without his authorization.

The accounting firm countersued Jackson the day after he filed his court papers, claiming the singer owed nearly $1 million in unpaid bills. That action was dismissed.

Jackson has maintained a low profile since his June 2005 acquittal on child sex abuse charges in California. His lawyers could not immediately be reached for comment.

(Reporting by Jill Serjeant; Editing by Bob Tourtellotte)

<p>U.S. pop star Michael Jackson waves to fans as he leaves after the "Premium VIP Party with Michael Jackson" in Tokyo March 8, 2007. REUTERS/Kiyoshi Ota</p>