LOS ANGELES (CBS) — The son of Tito Jackson has been awarded temporary guardianship of Michael Jackson’s children at an emergency hearing Wednesday.
TJ Jackson petitioned for temporary guardianship in the absence of Katherine Jackson, who has been in Arizona, allegedly under doctor’s orders.
During the emergency hearing, Judge Mitchell Beckloff suspended Katherine Jackson’s guardianship of the children — Paris, 14, Prince, 15, and Blanket, 10 — because of the ongoing dispute among the Jackson siblings and Katherine’s continued absence.
TJ Jackson, 34, told the judge he spoke to Katherine Jackson Tuesday and that she was speaking strangely, seemed to be speaking in code and other people’s voices could be heard in the background.
Attorney’s for TJ and Katherine Jackson said they believed that the Jackson family matriarch’s absence from Los Angeles was not voluntary.
Katherine Jackson was reported missing over the weekend, but she surfaced with family in Arizona. Her disappearance occurred at about the same time Jackson siblings Randy, Janet, Jermaine, Tito and Rebbie sent a letter to the executors of Michael Jackson’s estate, challenging the validity of his will.
Randy Jackson, the youngest brother in the performing family, says his brother Michael’s will is a fake, KNX 1070’s John Brooks reports.
“We feel there is criminal misconduct on their part and that our brother Michael was not where they said he was on the day that the will was signed,” Randy Jackson said.
Tito has reportedly withdrawn his opposition to the will.
The estate’s executors, John Branca and John McClain, say they are trying to protect the children from bullying and greed. They have denied all claims of wrongdoing and warn of “false and defamatory accusations.”
Legal Analyst Royal Oakes told KNX 1070 that the Jackson siblings and the executors of Michael Jackson’s estate have been at odds for a while now.
“There’s a big, simmering fight between the siblings on the one hand and the three businesspeople who were appointed in Michael Jackson’s will to administer his estate. And there are arguments over money, over the direction of the estate and the Michael Jackson business,” Oakes said.
On Monday afternoon, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputies were called out to investigate a scuffle at Katherine Jackson’s home in Calabasas. A sheriff’s department spokesman confirmed a “minor scuffle” between two members of the Jackson family. A security video of the confrontation, showing a tense exchange between Janet and Paris Jackson, was made public Tuesday.
Judge Beckloff was initially not going to appoint TJ Jackson with temporary guardianship, because no one had notified Diana Ross, who is named as Michael Jackson’s will as the successor guardian of the children in his mother’s absence. However, after appointing TJ Jackson the temporary guardian, the judge told attorneys to notify Ross and Debbie Rowe, the mother of Paris and Prince.
Beckloff also ordered the children not be taken out of California without a court order.
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