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Last Updated: Tuesday, 15 March, 2005, 20:10 GMT
Jackson boy defends abuse denial
Michael Jackson arrives at court
Michael Jackson denies charges of sex abuse and false imprisonment
Michael Jackson's teenage accuser has said he told a teacher the singer did not sexually abuse him because he feared more mocking from classmates.

Gavin Arvizo, 15, has now finished giving evidence in the trial.

It comes a day after he admitted under cross-examination that he had denied being molested when asked by a teacher.

Last week the court in Santa Maria, California, heard the boy's account of how the alleged abuse took place. Mr Jackson denies all the charges.

Prosecutor Tom Sneddon asked Gavin on Tuesday why he had denied being abused when questioned about it by his former teacher, Jeffrey Alpert, in 2003.

All the kids were already making fun of me at school and I didn't want anyone to think it had really happened
Gavin Arvizo

The teenager replied that on returning from his last stay at the singer's ranch, Neverland, school friends mocked him, saying he was the boy "raped" by Michael Jackson.

He said he had been in several fights as a result and so was called in to see Mr Alpert, a dean at his Los Angeles school.

In the stand on Monday, Gavin admitted telling his former teacher that the singer "didn't do anything to me".

He explained on Tuesday: "All the kids were already making fun of me at school and I didn't want anyone to think it had really happened."

'Caught drinking'

Before Gavin concluded his evidence, Mr Sneddon asked what he thought of Mr Jackson now.

"I don't really like him any more," the boy said. "I don't think he was really deserving of the respect I was giving him as the coolest guy in the world."

Mr Jackson's lawyer Thomas Mesereau wrapped up his cross-examination by focusing on the allegations that Mr Jackson gave Gavin alcohol and kept the boy and his family at Neverland against their will.

The lawyer suggested Gavin had been caught drinking at Neverland while the singer was away.

Mr Jackson's Neverland ranch is at the centre of the case

He also asked why no-one in the boy's family complained about being held prisoner despite numerous opportunities.

Gavin said he did not try to escape because "I liked being at Neverland - it was like Disneyland". His mother had been more worried, he added.

The prosecution claims the family was held at the ranch for more than a month because Mr Jackson wanted them to make a video rebutting damaging claims made in a 2003 documentary.

Mr Mesereau concluded by asking the teenager if he discussed the money he would make if Mr Jackson was convicted.

The defence team's central argument is that Gavin and his family invented the allegations of sexual abuse to make money.

Mr Mesereau's questioning on Monday showed up several apparent inconsistencies in Gavin's testimony.

He suggested Gavin acted out of vengeance after he felt abandoned by the singer, a man he saw as a father figure and had called "Daddy Michael".

Mr Jackson denies 10 charges including child abuse and false imprisonment.

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