Judge orders independent investigation into Jackson custody saga

The judge overseeing the guardianship of Michael Jackson’s children today said he wants an independent investigation into their well-being.

The order followed nearly a week of turmoil in the late pop star’s family, including a dispute between relatives on Monday and the absence and return of their grandmother.

Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckloff’s order came as the attorney for Jackson’s mother said she will share guardianship of the singer’s three children in a deal that will relieve her of some of the day-to-day stresses of managing a famous family.

The decision was made after a meeting between Katherine Jackson and lawyer Perry Sanders Jr yesterday. He said Michael Jackson’s eldest son Prince has told attorneys he approves of the arrangement.

The proposal could be presented to the judge next week. If approved, it would make Tito Joe “TJ” Jackson, the son of Michael’s brother Tito, a co-guardian of the children – Prince, Paris and Blanket – who range in age from 10 to 15.

“Mrs Jackson is extremely pleased with the prospect of enjoying the pleasure of raising Michael’s children without the day-to-day tedium of items such as managing the large staff that goes with such a high-profile family and focus her attention on being a grandmother and raising Michael’s children,” Sanders wrote in a statement.

The judge on Wednesday suspended Mrs Jackson’s guardianship duties temporarily and appointed TJ Jackson as temporary guardian.

He was expected to file a petition today to become the children’s permanent guardian, but Sanders said that is a formality meant to abide by court orders.

The judge said there were no indications 82-year-old Mrs Jackson had done anything wrong, and he would likely re-instate her as guardian upon her return.

Mrs Jackson has been at a spa in Arizona since July 15 with her daughter Rebbie and other relatives and had not spoken to her grandchildren during that time.

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