Jackson dad renews call for new probe of son's death

Fri Mar 18, 2011 3:19pm EDT
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By Tracy Rucinski

MADRID (Reuters) - A week before jury selection begins in the manslaughter trial of Michael Jackson's doctor, the late singer's father renewed calls for a federal probe into his son's death based on his belief a conspiracy was at work.

Joe Jackson, in Madrid to promote a worldwide tour of the hit Spanish musical "Forever King of Pop," said on Friday he believes Dr. Conrad Murray was acting on behalf of other people involved in Michael's career and said Michael had warned his family he would be killed over the publishing rights to hit songs such as "Thriller" and "Billie Jean."

"I want to get the other people that's involved, not just Dr. Murray. That's why I'm trying to get a federal investigation, so they can grab them all," Jackson said.

He characterized Murray as "just the fall guy," in an interview with Reuters, but declined to say who else he thought might be to blame in the death of his superstar son.

"I'm not calling names, but they know who they are," said the patriarch of the family of Jackson singers who helped define the Motown sound of the late 1960s and '70s.

"Michael knew that something was going to happen to him before it happened," said Joe Jackson, who wore his customary black fedora and gold chains.

Michael Jackson, dubbed the King of Pop for his many hits, died in 2009 at age 50 in Los Angeles of a drug overdose only days before he was to begin a series of comeback concerts in London. Murray was hired by concert promoters AEG Live to care for the singer as he rehearsed, and he was giving Jackson the anesthetic propofol to help him sleep at home.

But propofol typically is used in hospitals, not as a sleep aid. Coroners have ruled propofol was the key drug that caused Jackson's death and prosecutors have charged Murray with involuntary manslaughter for improperly administering it.   Continued...

<p>Joe Jackson, father of deceased pop star Michael Jackson, listens to a question during an interview with Reuters in Madrid March 18, 2011. REUTERS/Juan Medina</p>