On Tuesday, a California judge dismissed the lawsuit against Michael Jackson’s estate, brought about by choreographer Wade Robson, who claimed the King of Pop molested him when he was a child.
USA Today reports that Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckloff found that two of Jackson’s entities, MJJ Productions and MJJ Ventures, were not liable for the allegations Robson presented against the singer. According to Robson, Jackson’s businesses had the duty to protect him as a child but failed to do so.
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“Without control over Michael Jackson, the corporate defendants could not impose ‘reasonable safeguards’ or take ‘reasonable steps’ to ‘avoid acts of unlawful sexual conduct in the future’ by Michael Jackson,” the judge said. “Moreover, Neverland Valley Ranch, where some of the abuse is alleged to have occurred, was owned by Michael Jackson, not either of the corporate defendants.”
Robson, now 35, met Jackson in 1987 after the then-child dancer won a dance contest in Australia. Robson and his mother later moved to the U.S., where he studied under Jackson and became close friends with the pop star. Decades later, Robson claimed that Jackson sexually assaulted him as a child.
“In my opinion Mr. Robson’s allegations, made twenty plus years after they supposedly occurred and years after Mr. Robson testified twice under oath — including in front of a jury — that Michael Jackson had never done anything wrong to him were always about the money rather than a search for the truth,” lawyer of Jackson’s businesses, Howard Weitzman, said.
Robson’s lawyer, Vince Finaldi, plans to appeal the decision.
Robson filed the initial sexual assault lawsuit against Jackson in 2013, four years after the Thriller singer passed away. In 2015, a judge tossed out the lawsuit, telling Robson it was too late.
The lawsuit came several years after Robson was the “star witness” for Jackson’s defense during his molestation trial. In 2005, Robson claimed that Jackson never touched him inappropriately, and that he spent the night with the singer at least 20 times at his Neverland Ranch without any foul play.
[Feature Photo: Michael Jackson/AP//Lennox McLendon]