A California appeals court on Monday gave life two lawsuits that were against the Late pop star Michael Jackson filed by two men of molesting them when they were boys.
While the case was dismissed in 2017, three judges in a tentative ruling said that the lawsuits by James Safechuck and Wade Robson against two Jackson owned entities should be reconsidered and bought alive.
During the brief hearing on Monday, Robson and Safechuck who accused the star in an Emmy winning HBO documentary Leaving Neverland earlier this year were present. The two came under the spotlight after the documentary released. Attorney Vince Finaldi said that the move is a right one. “All they’ve ever wanted is their day in court,” Finaldi said.
According to the new law signed by the state governor Gavin Newson, the age bar for the victims of sexual abuse was raised from age 28 to 40. It also gives the victim a window of three years to sue, starting January 1.
The new law has given the victims a chance to seek justice since the old one did not give them the chance to. According to the old law, the victim had to file a lawsuit within eight years after attaining adulthood.
“The idea that someone who is assaulted as a child can actually run out of time to report that abuse is outrageous,” said Lorena Gonzalez, the California assemblywoman, when she introduced the bill. “More and more, we’re hearing about people who were victims years ago but were not ready to come forward to tell their story until now. We shouldn’t be telling victims their time is up when in reality we need them to come forward to protect the community from future abuse.”
The attorney of Jackson entity has accepted the case and supported the court decision but at the same time has stressed on the fact that the allegations are all false and it was long ago proved.
“This new law extends the time for genuine victims of abuse to file legal claims,” Jackson estate attorney Howard L. Weitzman said in a statement. “The appellate court’s tentative ruling is not on the merits of Robson and Safechuck’s allegations and the court in no way said that these cases will go to trial. Neither does it reverse the 2015 rulings dismissing Robson and Safechuck’s claims against the estate, which are final and no longer subject to any appeals. We are confident that the claims against Michael Jackson’s corporate entities will, once again, be dismissed as has happened before.”