Michael Jackson owed $500 m in debt

By admin
14 August 2013

Michael Jackson owed nearly $500 million in debt before he died, forensic account William R Ackerman told the court.

Michael Jackson owed nearly $500 million (R5 billion) in debt before he died.

The Thriller hitmaker was forced to fork out $30 million (R300 million) a year in interest charges after his wild spending on lavish furniture and bizarre artwork spiralled out of control, and his previous tours failed to bring in any profit to cover it, forensic accountant William R Ackerman has told the court.

Ackerman was called to testify on behalf of concert promoters AEG Live on Monday in the wrongful death lawsuit filed by the Jackson family. He told jurors how the late singer would regularly splash out on travel, donations to charity, gifts and spend "a lot of money on jewellery".

He explained, "He spent more than he brought in. Consistently, his largest expenditure was interest expense. He spent a ton of money on interest. On an annual basis [he was] spending $15 to $20 million a year more than he brought in."

However, Michael's Neverland Ranch and private amusement park ? where he lived from 1988 to 2005 ? was also putting a strain on the star's pocket as it required maintenance staff for the petting zoo and the train that travelled around the property.

Banks and credit companies refused to provide the King of Pop with any more cash loans after 2007, which meant mortgage payments on his mother, Katherine's, family home weren’t met.

Ackerman told the Los Angeles court, "He was tapped out."

The Jackson family are suing AEG Live as they believe the company negligently hired Dr Conrad Murray, who administered the lethal dose of propofol which killed Michael in 2009 and who’s currently serving four years’ imprisonment for involuntary manslaughter.

-Bang Showbiz

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