Thursday, June 20, 2024
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Murray sentenced four years for manslaughter

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Los Angeles: Michael Jackson’s personal physician Conrad Murray was jailed to the maximum of four years in the pop icon’s 2009 death with the judge lambasting the doctor for his “money-for-madness” behaviour.

Giving Murray the maximum sentence yesterday, Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor expressed shock over the doctor’s lack of remorse. Pastor said the evidence in the case showed a “continuous pattern of lies and deceit.”

“He has absolutely no sense of remorse, absolutely no sense of fault and is and remains dangerous,” Pastor said ending the seven-week long high profile trial.

Under a new state law, Murray, 58, will serve the sentence in LA County Jail rather than in a state prison. The maximum time Murray would spend in County Jail is two years under state sentencing guidelines, said Steve Whitmore, a spokesman for the county Sheriff’s Department.

Several members of the Jackson family attended the sentencing hearing. A statement, read by Katherine Jackson attorney, said, “As Michael’s parents, we never have imagined we would live to witness his passing. It is simply against the natural order of things. As his children, we will grow up without a father, our best friend, our playmate and our dad.”

The sentence “reminds physicians that they cannot sell their services to the highest bidder and cast aside their Hippocratic oath to do no harm,” it further said.

In a 30-minute reprimand, the judge explained why he was sentencing Murray to the maximum jail time, even though the doctor was technically eligible for probation.

Murray treated Jackson like a “medical experiment,” the judge said, which factored into his decision to hand down the maximum sentence. Pastor also reminded Murray of his “horrific violation of trust” in caring for the pop superstar.

It should be made very clear that experimental medicine is not going to be tolerated. Dr Murray was intrigued by the prospect and he engaged in this money-for-medicine madness that is simply not going to be tolerated by me,” Pastor said.

The judge said he agreed that Murray should pay compensation to Jackson’s family and a hearing on January 23 will decide the amount. The prosecution has asked for Murray to pay USD 100 million to compensate Jackson’s family.

Murray was convicted of involuntary manslaughter earlier this month for giving insomnia-suffering Jackson an overdose of powerful anesthetic drug propofol, which led to the singer’s death on June 2009.

The ‘King Of Pop’ was planning to make a comeback at the age of 50 with concert tour ‘This Is It’ and had hired Murray at a salary of USD 150,000 a month to look after his health. (PTI)

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