Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Michael Jackson camp denies health problems

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – A spokesman for Michael Jackson released a statement on Monday denying as a "total fabrication" a report claiming that the former King of Pop needs a lung transplant due to a rare respiratory disease.

The statement, attributed to Jackson's "official and sole spokesperson, Dr. Tohme Tohme" and issued by Los Angeles firm Scoop Marketing, cites an interview with writer Ian Halperin in British newspaper the Sunday Express in which Halperin said Jackson was suffering from Alpha 1-antitrypsin deficiency.

Halperin, who is at work on an unauthorized biography of the singer, also claims Jackson can barely speak, suffers from emphysema and internal bleeding, and has lost 95 percent of the vision in his left eye.

"Concerning this author's allegations, we would hope in the future that legitimate media will not continue to be exploited by such an obvious attempt to promote this unauthorized 'biography,'" said the statement attributed to Tohme.

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