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Last Updated: Sunday, 8 June, 2003, 15:00 GMT 16:00 UK
Jackson to visit childhood home
Michael Jackson
Jackson's legal affairs have seemingly overtaking his music career
Michael Jackson is to pay a visit to his home city of Gary, Indiana, for the first time in two decades, as he travels to the state for a court appearance.

The pop superstar is scheduled to make three public appearances on Wednesday, before giving a sworn testimony in a copyright infringement lawsuit.

These will include receiving the keys to the city, attending an assembly at his brothers' old school and visiting his boyhood home.

Jackson has until Friday to complete a court-ordered deposition in Indianapolis in a legal action alleging that his family group, the Jackson Five, used two songs by another band without permission.

He had been due to appear at an Indianapolis court on 21 May, but was admitted to hospital with a mystery illness hours before he was to have given his testimony.

Amid allegations that he was faking the illness, a doctor who treated him submitted a statement to the court that Jackson had suffered a suspected anxiety attack, becoming dizzy, weak and dehydrated.

Jackson's lawyer, Brian Oxman, said the singer sometimes became nervous and failed to eat when faced with depositions.

The Jackson Five were formed by their father Joe
The Indianapolis lawsuit has been brought by former Steeltown Records boss Gordon Keith, who said he had not been recognised for tracks that appeared on the 1996 album Pre-History: The Lost Steeltown Recordings.

Risk of fine

He also said the Jackson Five - which included Jackson's brothers Jermaine, Jackie, Tito and Marlon - had also infringed on the name Ripples and Waves, which was reportedly used by another group from their hometown of Gary, Indiana.

Jackson's legal representatives have argued that Jackson did not authorise the release of the Pre-History album, so cannot be held responsible.

District Judge Philip Simon has ordered Jackson to return to court by 13 June to complete his deposition or face the possibility of being fined $1,000 per day for the delay.

The trip will coincide with a scheduled ruling by a Los Angeles judge on whether to dismiss a lawsuit filed by a financial company claiming Jackson owes them $12m (7.3m).

Myung-Ho Lee and his firm Union Finance and Investment Corp are suing Jackson for breach of contract and fraud, branding him "a ticking financial time bomb waiting to explode".

They said he had failed to pay their bills - while at the same time squandering his fortune on a series of "charlatans, hucksters, sycophants and swindlers".

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03 Jun 03  |  Entertainment
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14 Mar 03  |  Entertainment
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Jackson's growing pains
28 Feb 03  |  Entertainment

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