Lost videotapes could clear MJ’s doc

Updated: Apr 03, 2011, 14:09 PM IST

London: Dr Conrad Murray’s lawyers have claimed that video footage, which could clear Michael Jackson’s doctor of killing him, has either vanished or been erased.

Murray’s legal team last week asked a judge to order police and prosecutors to surrender the entire 24 hours of footage from security cameras operating in virtually every room of the King of Pop’s house.

But they have been given only four minutes of the tapes, reports the Daily Star.

And the Los Angeles Police Department has admitted detectives downloaded only 11 minutes from June 25, 2009, the day Jackson suffered a fatal overdose of hospital-strength anaesthetic Propofol.

Attorneys for the cardiologist, who was paid more than 90,000 pounds a month by the singer, claimed video evidence could show a third party entered Jackson’s bedroom during his final hours.

But the brief sequence the LAPD handed over shows only Jackson himself returning to the mansion in LA’s Holmby Hills from rehearsals for his planned ‘This Is It’ swansong concerts at around 12.30am.

They were “astonished” to be told that detectives only kept a further seven minutes.

“The defence is anxious to know exactly who came and went from the property on that fateful day and that is now impossible,” a source close to the case said.

“Their case rests on the possibility that either Jackson or someone else administered Propofol over and above the dose Murray gave to Jackson himself.

“Examining the full tapes was key to the third party theory. But those tapes no longer exist. Were they wiped or lost in error?” the source added.

Murray is on 46,000 pounds bail awaiting trial for involuntary manslaughter, to which he has pleaded not guilty.