Belfast Telegraph

Jackson doctor relieved at verdict

The doctor who went to prison for killing Michael Jackson with a drug overdose has said he cried when he heard a jury had rejected a claim that the promoter of the singer's comeback concerts was negligent in hiring him.

Katherine Jackson had sought to hold AEG Live LLC responsible for her son's death, arguing that it hired Dr Conrad Murray to be the singer's physician without considering whether he was fit for the job.

Murray told NBC's Today show from prison that he cried when he heard the jury's verdict. He said he was "relieved" even though he always believed the wrongful-death lawsuit was "frivolous".

Murray is appealing his 2011 involuntary manslaughter conviction. He's due to be released from prison later this month. He says he's looking forward to reuniting with his family and restarting his life.

A jury in the US rejected the lawsuit brought by Jackson's mother claiming AEG Live was negligent in hiring the doctor.

With its verdict, the panel also delivered a somewhat surprising message - jurors did not believe Dr Conrad Murray was unfit or incompetent to perform his duties involving Jackson. The ruling on that question ended any further consideration on damages and who was at fault for the death.

"I couldn't be more pleased with the way the jury came out. They got it exactly right," AEG Live lead defence lawyer Marvin S Putnam said after the verdict was read.

Katherine Jackson told reporters she was OK after the verdict. A victory could have meant hundreds of millions of dollars in damages for her and the singer's three children and provided a rebuke of AEG Live, the nation's second-largest concert promoter.

Murray was convicted of involuntary manslaughter after giving Jackson the overdose as he prepared for a series of comeback shows.

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