11 Sep 2011

Jackson jury process underway

5:56 am on 11 September 2011

A court in Los Angeles has completed the first phase of selecting a jury for the trial of Michael Jackson's doctor, who is accused of involuntary manslaughter.

The BBC reports 145 people have been chosen to go forward to the next stage of the selection process, when they will be questioned in court on 23 September.

This involves completing a 30-page questionnaire about the pop star, his music and the media coverage of his death on 25 June 2009.

Questions included: "Have you ever considered yourself a fan of Michael Jackson or the Jackson family?"

They were also required to say how much they knew about the case.

Dr Conrad Murray, 58, is charged with involuntary manslaughter. he has pleaded not guilty.

Lawyer Edward Chernoff has already said in court that the defence's position is that Jackson was addicted to the painkiller demerol and was withdrawing from it when he died.

Dr Murray, who was hired by Jackson to help prepare for his planned comeback concerts in London in July 2009, was in charge of administering the anaesthetic to the star.

Opening arguments in the trial are expected to begin on 27 September.