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Michael Jackson Found Not Guilty in Child Molestation Trial

Michael Jackson
A jury in the Western U.S. state of California has found international pop music star Michael Jackson not guilty of child molestation and false imprisonment.

The jury in Santa Maria, California reached a verdict on its seventh day of deliberations, following three-and-a-half month of courtroom arguments.

It found Jackson not guilty of giving alcohol to a 13-year-old boy and then molesting him at the entertainer's ranch two years ago.

Jurors also found him not guilty of conspiring to detain the boy's family at his ranch.

Jackson came out of the courtroom to rousing cheers from several hundred supporters gathered outside the Santa Maria. He made no statement before leaving in his motorcade.

Prosecutors have portrayed Mr. Jackson as a predator with a history of sexually abusing young boys. Jackson has denied the charges. His attorneys say that his accusers fabricated the allegations in order to take advantage of him.

If convicted on all 10 counts, Jackson could have faced up to 18 years in prison.