Among other items: Diesel spill blamed on fatal heart attack; ex-FBI agent accused of tipping off suspect; and ADA lawsuits called "systematic extortion."

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Fingerprints belonging to both Michael Jackson and the boy accusing him of child molestation were found on pornographic magazines seized from Jackson’s Neverland ranch last year, the Santa Barbara News-Press reported yesterday, citing sources it did not identify.

If the reported evidence is admitted during Jackson’s trial, prosecutors would be expected to argue that the fingerprints were proof that Jackson showed the boy pornographic literature before molesting him. But the defense could question whether the entertainer knew the boy had been leafing through the magazines.

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According to the newspaper, the boy and his brother often visited Neverland when Jackson wasn’t home.

Superior Court Judge Rodney Melville is expected to decide next month what evidence can be admitted at trial, scheduled to begin Jan. 31.

Jackson, 46, has pleaded not guilty to charges of child molestation, conspiracy and administering an intoxicating agent, alcohol, to his alleged victim.

Investigators most recently searched Jackson’s Neverland home on Dec. 3 and 4, and on Dec. 4 the entertainer voluntarily gave them a DNA sample at their request. Investigators first searched the home on Nov. 18, 2003, shortly before Jackson was charged.


Barnstable, Mass.


Diesel spill blamed on fatal heart attack

A man suffered a fatal heart attack while refueling a ferry, resulting in a spill that dumped nearly 2,000 gallons of diesel fuel into Hyannis Harbor yesterday morning, a Coast Guard official said.

Kurt Garland, 48, was gassing up the Grey Lady, a high-speed ferry operated by Hy-Line Cruises between Cape Cod and Nantucket, when he had a heart attack and died.


Los Angeles


Ex-FBI agent accused of tipping off suspect

A former FBI agent has been charged with tipping off the subject of a national-security probe that he was under investigation.

Denise K. Woo, 45, was arraigned Monday on a five-count indictment charging her with deliberately disclosing a covert FBI operation and of lying to fellow FBI agents. She was freed on $50,000 bail.

The Los Angeles Times, which obtained a copy of the indictment, reported yesterday that the covert operation focused on a Chinese-American man who worked for a defense contractor and was suspected of passing sensitive information to the Chinese government. That man, identified only as “J.W.,” was never charged with any crime.

Woo’s lawyer said Friday she was actually trying to help an innocent man.

Woo is the second member of the agency’s Chinese counterintelligence unit in Los Angeles to be indicted on criminal charges in the past year. A retired FBI agent was charged last year with mishandling sensitive documents the FBI said he allowed to fall into the hands of an accused Chinese double agent.


Los Angeles


ADA lawsuits called “systematic extortion”

A man who has filed hundreds of lawsuits accusing businesses of violating the federal Americans With Disabilities Act was running an extortion scam, says a judge who has barred him from bringing any more such actions without court permission.

Jarek Molski is a “vexatious litigant” who has been running a “scheme of systematic extortion,” U.S. District Judge Edward Rafeedie ruled.

Molski, 34, who has used a wheelchair since being paralyzed in a motorcycle accident a decade ago, has filed 400 suits since 1998. Most have accused restaurants, wineries, bowling alleys, banks and other public facilities of violating his rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

In most cases, the judge said in Thursday’s ruling, Molski seeks damages of $4,000 a day until the target of his suit is brought into compliance with the disabilities act, then agrees to a cash settlement.

Also


Fire broke out
on the set while a television movie was being filmed at the Tucson Convention Center, injuring five people and forcing the evacuation of thousands arriving for a concert in another part of the building. The fire started Friday night on the set of ABC’s “Desperation,” written by horror writer Stephen King. The concert by country music singer Keith Urban was canceled.

A small helicopter crashed yesterday next to the helipad atop the 54-story Wells Fargo building in Los Angeles while trying to make an emergency landing, authorities said. Two men aboard the privately owned aircraft were uninjured.