Lawyers representing Michael Jackson's doctor Conrad Murray have filed an official request to have "gruesome" photographs of the superstar's corpse ruled ineligible for use at his upcoming trial.
The medic is set to stand trial next month (May11) over accusations he administered the powerful dose of anaesthetic Propofol which caused the King of Pop's death in June 2009. Murray has pleaded not guilty to a charge of involuntary manslaughter.
His attorneys have now filed a motion with Los Angeles Superior Court asking for pictures taken during Jackson's autopsy to be ruled out of trial evidence, alleging the shots will prejudice the jury.
The court papers, obtained by the Los Angeles Times, state, "These photographs are graphic, gruesome and highly prejudicial... Admission of these photographs to the jurors will jeopardise Dr. Murray's right to a fair trial because of the significant risk that the jury will base their decision not on the evidence presented, but on emotional grounds which play no part in a criminal action."
Murray's legal team has also asked for the court not to hear mention of the physician's personal life, deeming it irrelevant to the proceedings: "The prosecution's case involves the treatment and care of Michael Jackson provided by Dr. Murray. It is not about the existence and number of children Dr. Murray has, or about his personal sexual relationship with women."
Judge Michael Pastor scheduled a hearing for the requests on 21 April (11).