Farrakhan aide has Jax clout

Head of table at confab

Mark Geragos may be leading Michael Jackson‘s defense against kiddie sex charges, but when the King of Pop’s inner circle met yesterday, a Nation of Islam honcho sat at the head of the table.

Leonard Muhammad, the son-in-law of controversial Minister Louis Farrakhan, was vague about why he was at the closed-door meeting.

“We just want to make sure that everybody knows Michael Jackson is innocent,” said Muhammad, who is also Farrakhan’s chief of staff.

The four-hour huddle in suite 117 of the posh Beverly Hills Hotel took place four days before Jackson’s arraignment on charges he sexually abused a cancer-stricken boy during a sleepover at the Neverland Ranch.

Jackson’s music manager, Charles Koppelman, said they were discussing the Gloved One’s bottom line – and the Jackson family’s dispute with Motown over royalties – not the criminal case.

“Muhammad is just one of a small group of advisers who were there today,” he said.

Although Farrakhan’s group denies any role in the disgraced singer’s finances, Muhammad’s presence was yet another sign that a group that preaches anti-Semitism and black separatism has its claws into Jackson, who is a Jehovah’s Witness.

The group’s Western regional minister, Tony Muhammad, dismissed concerns about the group’s presence.

“Most of the people in the room were Jewish. This is not about any one religion,” he said.

Magnificent Majestick, a confidant of Jackson’s dad, Joe, and the pop star’s “personal magician,” said the group was brought in by Jacko’s Muslim sibling Jermaine, who wants someone to make sure his brother is not taken to the cleaners.

“But Mark Geragos is the family lawyer,” he said. “If you was in trouble, who would [you] listen to, him or Minister Farrakhan – hello?”

Koppelman insisted Jackson is calling his career shots.

Asked why Jackson was not at the closed-door session at the Beverly Hills Hotel, Geragos said, “Who says he isn’t?”

Jermaine Jackson also announced yesterday that Jackson’s fan clubs are mobilizing a “caravan of love” to show support for the weirdo warbler at his arraignment Friday.

Jermaine’s bizarre brother denies abusing the boy, is free on $3million bail and is moving into a rented Beverly Hills mansion.

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(Listed if other than Religion News Blog, or if not shown above)
New York Daily News, USA
Jan. 13, 2004
Matthew Heller, in Beverley Hills, California, and Corky Siemaszko in New York

Religion News Blog posted this on Tuesday January 13, 2004.
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