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Geraldine Hughes first came to the world’s attention as an anonymous whistleblower. In 1994, the decorated investigative journalist Mary A Fischer published an article about the child molestation allegations levelled against Michael Jackson by Jordan Chandler and his father Evan. Fischer’s story included information attributed to a source inside the office of attorney Barry Rothman, suggesting that he and his client, Evan Chandler, had cooked up an extortion plot against Michael Jackson. The story was published in more than one major, glossy magazine and was covered by broadcast media – but the whistleblower’s identity was never revealed.
In 2003, however, Geraldine decided to out herself. In 1993, as the Michael Jackson scandal unfolded, she had been working as Barry Rothman’s personal legal secretary. She had unrivalled, insider access to the nerve centre of the celebrity scandal of the century, bearing witness to many meetings and discussions which took place just metres from her desk. Geraldine had been highly disturbed by what she witnessed, and she felt the public would too – but most of the media seemed to have adopted the position that Michael Jackson was guilty and in her view, the full story had never been told. Geraldine’s conscience demanded that she tell the wider public what she knew.
In 2003, as she began work on a tell-all memoir, news suddenly broke that Michael Jackson was being accused again. Her publishers fast-tracked a press release about the impending book, titled Redemption, and Geraldine found herself on a whirlwind media tour. But once again, the media overwhelmingly adopted an anti-Jackson position. While Geraldine’s book would become well-known within the Jackson fan community, her information was largely ignored.
But in 2019, award-winning filmmaker Danny Wu interviewed Geraldine as he investigated the Chandler case for his feature documentary Square One. Upon its release, Square One became the number one Amazon Prime documentary in the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada, finally bringing Geraldine Hughes’s story to a much wider audience. But in Square One, Geraldine was one voice among many. For the MJCast’s 2023 Vindication Day episode, we decided to sit down with Geraldine.
Unfortunately, technical problems meant the interview ended abruptly and we were unable to reschedule with Geraldine to ask her several more questions. But this episode is nonetheless the most in-depth, one-on-one broadcast interview she had ever given.
This episode was edited by Charlie Carter and Jamon Bull.
• Geraldine Hughes on Twitter.
• Geraldine’s website for music.
• Purchase Geraldine’s book, Redemption.
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