A written agreement claiming singer Michael Jackson paid $ 600,000 to have child abuse allegations lodged against him kept quiet surfaced Friday. Jackson’s reps have called the agreement a phony, claiming it was used to blackmail the singer last year.
The agreement is unrelated to the current accusations aimed at Jackson by a 13-year-old boy who claims he was molested by the pop star. The Jackson camp has claimed the allegations stemmed from an extortion attempt by the boy’s father.
The two-page document, titled “General Agreement” and signed on July 7, 1992, specifies terms reached between the “Michael Jackson Organization” and the mother of a teenager. Terms of the contract call for Jackson to “have no contact of any sort” with the parties and to “not extort, harass, intimidate” one another. The agreement allows for the mother to get the money as long as the allegations are kept secret.
The agreement was provided to the media by Ernie Rizzo, a Chicago-based private investigator who originally claimed he was working for the father of the 13-year-old boy. The claim was disputed by the father’s attorney, Richard Hirsch , who said Rizzo “does not speak for (and is not) employed by the father.”
Rizzo said he was faxed the agreement at his Brentwood hotel, and believes there is a “50-50 chance it’s real.”
“It’s a phony,” said Jackson security consultant Anthony Pellicano of the agreement. Pellicano added he was offered the agreement last year for $ 500,000. He declined to specify who contacted him, but said police were not notified of the extortion attempt.
A police source said investigators had not yet seen the alleged agreement, and questioned its relationship to the ongoing investigation. “If it’s genuine, it would be a separate, possibly parallel investigation. It could also indicate a pattern (of behavior).”