Michael Jackson was “tapped out” in debt and owed an estimated $400-$500 million when he died, according to a forensic accountant.
William R. Ackerman was testifying on behalf of AEG Live as a defence witness in the wrongful death trial when giving a detailed view of Jacko’s finances.
Ackerman explained to the jurors how the late singer spent money on travel, art, charity, gifts and lavish furniture. “He spent a lot of money on jewellery,” he added.
He also claimed the infamous Neverland Ranch was a huge drain on his income with its maintenance staff, zoo and train that travelled around the property.
The certified public accountant continued: “consistently, his [Jackson] largest expenditure was interest expense. He spent a ton of money on interest.”
The LA Times report Jackson’s biggest expense was his $30 million in annual payments on debt when he died in 2009.
Ackerman told the New York courtroom how interest on loans – ranging from 7% to 16.8% annually – grew over the years.He testified how in 1993, Jackson owed $30 million, a figure that grew to a staggering $140 million by 1998. In an eight year period between June 2001 and 2009, the popstars debt increased by an eye-watering $170 million.
Ackerman adds that when Jackson died he owed in the region of $400-$500 million.
“He was tapped out,” Ackerman said.
The numbers know-it-all continued to reveal that Jackson received no loans after 2007 and was three or four months behind payments of his San Fernando Valley home where his mother lived at the time of his death.
Ackerman is the latest high-priced expert to testify in the trial with experts frequently referencing to Jackson’s financial predicament which could be a key factor in the amount of damages the firm could pay the King of Pop’s mother and children.
His testimony is continuing as he insists the singer was in a “precarious financial position.The Jacksons are suing AEG Live for negligence in hiring and surprivising Conrad Murray, the doctor who administered the lethal dose of anesthetic to Jackson in weeks before his 50-date tour.
Ackerman claims Jackson’s previous tours were not profitable. Danger tour broke even while HIStory tour lost $11.2 million.
The trial continues!!!