Jackson ‘lured vulnerable boys’

Victoria Ward, New York

Prosecutor Ron Zonen said Jackson followed a “grooming process” with accuser, Gavin Arvizo, and his younger brother, luring them into his grasp with sweets, video games and entertainment and separating them from their parents.

In his closing statement to the jury he said once in Jackson’s room the two boys learned about human sexuality “from someone who is only too willing to be their teacher.” “At night they entered

into the world of the forbidden. They went into Michael Jackson’s room, which is a veritable fortress.”

He claimed the singer used pornography to lower the boys’ inhibitions as well as appearing naked before them and simulating a sex act with a mannequin.

Mr Zonen launched a strong attack on the defence’s case, focusing on opening statements and Gavin Arvizo’s mother, whose evidence was pivotal to both sides. He claimed the defence of Jackson’s lawyer, Tom Mesereau, was “entirely limited” to attacks on Mrs Arvizo.

“This case is about the exploitation and sexual abuse of a 13-year-old cancer survivor by an international celebrity,” Mr Zonen told Santa Maria court.

More in this section

IE_logo_newsletters

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox