Date: 14th October 2000
MICHAEL JACKSON is preparing to salvage his reputation and prove he's a good father when he talks at Oxford University next year (01).
The THRILLER singer will be debating on childcare and answering questions about the 1993 allegations of sexual abuse brought against him by American teenager JORDY CHANDLER.
The reclusive megastar was the subject of a police investigation seven years ago, but the matter was resolved when he settled with the child's family.
His new Jewish mentor, RABBI SHMULEY BOTEACH, will accompany Jackson for the lively talk. Boteach says, "The basis of our justice system is that man is innocent until proven otherwise. Tens of thousands of kids have passed through Neverland Valley (Jackson's American home) and only one has made an allegation. "The allegations were thoroughly investigated by the police and by the District Attorney and no charges were brought so why should we presume he's guilty.
There were mitigating circumstances for the child that I can't get into. "The only reason people think Michael was responsible was because there was an actual settlement but when you're a superstar and your life can't get on because the press won't leave you alone even though the police don't bring charges, then you just try to get rid of it."