Michael Jackson, addressing his fans directly via a new Web site, said the child molestation allegations made against him are “predicated on a big lie” and he will be exonerated in court.
The entertainer’s spokesman, Stuart Backerman, said last week that Jackson was putting the site together so he could communicate directly with the news media and fans. Jackson said in his statement it would serve as a source for “official communications on my case.”
“As you know, the charges recently directed at me are terribly serious,” Jackson said in the six-paragraph statement. “They are, however, predicated on a big lie. This will be shown in court, and we will be able to put this horrible time behind us.”
Jackson surrendered to Santa Barbara County authorities Thursday after an arrest warrant was issued alleging he committed lewd or lascivious acts with a child under 14. He was released on $3 million bail and immediately returned to Las Vegas, where he had been filming a video. Authorities have said they expect to file formal charges sometime after Thanksgiving.
Meanwhile, one of Jackson’s longtime friends, actress Elizabeth Taylor, spoke out on his behalf Sunday, saying she was breaking a previously self-imposed silence because she believes the pop star is being treated unfairly by the news media.
“I believe Michael is innocent and that he will be vindicated,” Taylor said in a statement released by her publicist.