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Judge denies Jackson family bid for new wrongful death trial

Judge denies Jackson family bid for new wrongful death trial

KING OF POP: Michael Jackson gestures during a news conference at the O2 Arena in London March 5, 2009. Photo: Reuters/Stefan Wermuth

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The family of late pop star Michael Jackson on Monday lost its bid for a new trial against concert promoter AEG Live, which had been cleared of liability in the singer’s death.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Yvette Palazuelos ruled that Jackson’s mother and children did not have standing for a re-trial after their attorneys argued last month that jury instructions were confusing and not wide enough in scope.

A jury in October cleared privately held AEG Live, the organizer of Jackson’s ill-fated 50 “This Is It” comeback shows in London, of negligently hiring cardiologist Conrad Murray as Jackson’s personal physician.

The verdict came after a sensational five-month trial that offered a glimpse into the private life and final days of the “King of Pop.”

Jackson family attorneys could send their appeal to a higher state court.

Katherine Jackson, 83, and the singer’s three children Prince Michael, Paris and Blanket, sued AEG Live over Jackson’s 2009 death at age 50 in Los Angeles from an overdose of the powerful anesthetic propofol administered by Murray.

The wrongful death lawsuit claimed the concert promoter had acted negligently by hiring Murray as Jackson’s personal physician, but a jury concluded Murray was sufficiently qualified for his job.

Murray was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in 2011 for Jackson’s death and served half of his 4-year sentence in a Los Angeles prison. He was released in October under a California state plan to reduce prison overcrowding.

(Reporting by Eric Kelsey, editing by Piya Sinha-Roy and Cynthia Osterman)

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