Friends and family of Michael Jackson had grown increasingly concerned over the pop star’s use of heavy medication in the last years of his life, it emerged today.
Sources told CNN that Jackson’s sister Janet tried to stage an intervention but was thwarted by her brother’s security guards.
Meanwhile, the singer’s friend and dermatologist Dr Arnold Klein has said he repeatedly warned Jackson against using the powerful sedative Diprivan.
Investigators are focusing on the role that the medication may have had in the singer’s death. Diprivan was among the substances found in Jackson’s rented LA mansion, according to law enforcement officials.
Speaking on CNN’s 'Larry King Live', Dr Klein said he wasn’t surprised that investigators had found several bottles of prescription drugs at Jackson’s home.
The doctor said he occasionally administered the painkiller Demerol, but told Jackson that he was “insane” for turning to Diprivan to help with insomnia.
“I knew at one point that he was using Diprivan when he was on tour in Germany. He was using it to go to sleep at night.
“I told him he was absolutely insane. I said, ’You have to quit it. This drug, you can’t repeatedly take’,” Dr Klein told CNN.
And it appears Jackson’s dermatologist was not the only one with concerns.
Reports also emerged today that Janet Jackson was so worried about her brother’s emaciated appearance in 2007 that she tried to intervene.
But according to CNN, Janet’s attempt – supported by other members of the Jackson family – was unsuccessful. The 'Thriller' singer allegedly ordered his security team not to allow them entry and even refused to take calls from his mother Katherine.
Results of a toxicology report that could reveal the role of Diprivan in Jackson’s death could still be weeks away.
But medication is known to be central to the investigation. Police in Los Angeles have called in the Drug Enforcement Administration to assist in the probe.
The federal body has greater experience in dealing with drugs misuse and could have been brought in to evaluate the role of so-called pill mills, illegal firms that pump out pharmaceutical drugs.
Meanwhile, questions also remained today over plans for the King of Pop’s final resting place.
Jackson’s gold-plated coffin was removed from the Staples Center in Los Angeles after Tuesday’s memorial event which saw stars and his 11-year-old daughter pay emotional tributes.
But the family have not revealed where he will be buried, with speculation ranging from a private cemetery in LA to the sprawling Neverland ranch in Santa Barbara.
A private memorial was held at Forest Lawn in Hollywood Hills before the memorial, but it is not thought that Jackson will be buried among the other Hollywood stars interred at the cemetery.
Likewise, there is doubt over whether the family will be allowed to bury him at Neverland, his former home.
Permission is needed to bury people at the estate and, with poor transport links to the property, local authorities may fear the grave will become a pilgrimage for Jackson’s millions of fans worldwide.
In a separate development, it was revealed today that Jackson’s star-studded public memorial on Tuesday cost Los Angeles $1.4m (€1m) - considerable less than previously estimated.
The police department said more than 4,000 officers worked to secure the Staples Center, Forest Lawn cemetery, and other areas that attracted fans and the media.