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Wednesday, July 1, 2009

MJ 'is not the biological father of his children'

Michael Jackson is not the biological father of his three children and his ex-wife Debbie Rowe is not their biological mother, it was claimed on Tuesday.

Rowe gave birth to the singer’s two elder children, Prince Michael and Paris, during their three-year marriage but the latest reports in the United States alleged that she was acting as a surrogate and that the children were conceived using donor eggs and donor sperm.

The paternity of the children has long been questioned as both are light-skinned, fair-haired and have blue eyes.

Jackson’s youngest child, Prince Michael II, was born to an unnamed surrogate using donor sperm, it was claimed, and the mother remained unaware that Jackson was the “receiving parent”.

The new allegations from celebrity website TMZ further complicate any potential custody battle over the future of Prince Michael, 12, Paris, 11, and Prince Michael II, seven.

On Monday, Jackson’s mother, Katherine, 79, was granted temporary custody of the three children and lodged an application to become their legal guardian.

However, if any party were to challenge Mrs Jackson for custody, the ensuing court case could set a legal

precedent as the circumstances are believed to be unique.

There were also reports yesterday that Jackson never filed legal papers to adopt any of his children.

In his 2003 interview with Martin Bashir, Jackson said he used “a surrogate mother and my own sperm cells” to conceive his youngest child. “I had my own sperm cells in my other two children. They are all my children,” he said.

As rumours swirled around the late entertainer’s personal life, arrangements were being made for Jackson’s body to return to his former home, Neverland, where fans will be allowed to pay their last respects to the singer, who died last Thursday aged 50.The hearse will be accompanied to the ranch in Santa Barbara, California, by a 30-strong motorcade. Tens of thousands of fans are expected to line the route on Friday and to queue at the gates of Neverland where a public viewing will be held, according to the website, which broke the news of Jackson’s death. A private funeral will take place on Sunday, according to reports last night.

Neverland was closed in 2006 after Jackson failed to keep up payments and the property has fallen into disrepair. Now there is talk of it becoming a money-spinning tourist attraction in the mould of Graceland, Elvis Presley’s former home.

Documents from 2007, which came to light yesterday, help to clarify Jackson’s tangled finances. They showed that the singer had debts of $331 million (£200 million) but assets of just over $576 million, which left him with a net worth of $236 million.

He also had $668,215 in cash, according to the report, which valued his 50 per cent stake in Sony/ATV Music Publishing at $390 million.

John Branca, Jackson’s lawyer until 2006, is believed to have his will and is expected to submit it to Los Angeles Superior Court later this week.

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