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Sneddon’s case against Michael Jackson was bullshit : Matt Taibbi – Rolling stones

June 13, 2011

Excerpt from “The Nation in the Mirror” Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone. Iss. 977/978 New York:

Ostensibly a story about bringing a child molester to justice, the Michael Jackson trial would instead be a kind of homecoming parade of insipid American types grifters, suckers and no-talent schemers, mired in either outright unemployment… or the bogus non-careers of the information age, looking to cash in any way they can.The MC of the proceedings was District Attorney Tom Sneddon, whose metaphorical role in this American reality show was to represent the mean gray heart of the Nixonian Silent Majority – the bitter mediocrity itching to stick it to anyone who’d ever taken a vacation to Paris. The first month or so of the trial featured perhaps the most compromised collection of prosecution witnesses ever assembled in an American criminal case – almost to a man a group of convicted liars, paid gossip hawkers or worse. The early witnesses against Jackson included a bodyguard who missed court because he was in custody facing charges stemming from a series of armed robberies, including holding up a Jack in the Box at gunpoint; a former Neverland maid who’d stolen a sketch Jackson had made of Elvis Presley and sold it to the tabloids for thirty grand; another former employee who’d lost a wrongful-termination suit against Jackson and had to pay part of a $1.4 million settlement as a result.

And then there was the very key figure in the case, the accuser’s mother, who had to plead the Fifth Amendment on the first day of her testimony to avoid cross-examination on a welfare-fraud allegation – a witness so completely full of sh—t that Sneddon’s own assistants cringed openly throughout most of her five days of testimony. In the next six weeks, virtually every piece of his case imploded in open court, and the chief drama of the trial quickly turned into a race to see if the DA could manage to put all of his witnesses on the stand without getting any of them removed from the courthouse in manacles.

Sneddon’s hard-on for Jackson was a faith-based vengeance grab every bit as blind and desperate as George Bush’s “case” against Saddam Hussein. If Ahmad Chalabi had ever been to Neverland, Sneddon would have put him on the stand too.

His case was bullsh—t. California vs. Jackson turned out to be basically a tale of a family of low-rent grifters trying to lay a criminal-molestation charge on a rich celebrity as a prelude to a civil suit.


9 Comments
  1. Mona permalink

    Mr. Matt Taibi, wow! A round of applause for his mastery of writing and an exquisite portrait of Tom Sneddon – I couldn’t agree more!

  2. Hilary permalink

    If you liek this, you should go to Google Books and look up Taibbi’s book “Smells like Dead Elephants.” He has an entire chapter about the trial in there. And no, he’s NOT an MJ fan. He calls MJ a freak in the book, but doesn’t deny his innocence.

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