The Last Word: Legal Edition – R. Kelly, Jermaine Jackson, and Vivica Fox all in the courtroom!

How’s it going folks? Another week, another 25 cents made. Welcome to a special legal edition of The Last Word. As you will see, this week was another example of how celebrities can’t seem to stay away from the long arm of the law. It kind of makes you wonder if anybody is taking steps to have funds automatically taken out of their paycheck to go into a private legal fund. From Toni Braxton to Mel B and Eddie Murphy to R. Kelly, can we honestly go a week without hearing about some star making an appearance in court or getting sued for whatever they allegedly did? Wishful thinking, I guess.But on the flip side, shout out to Usher and his new wife Tameka for finally getting hitched. Get well wishes to Amy Winehouse, who canceled a string of European tour dates after being in the hospital for exhaustion. And last, but not least, thanks to the sounding boards for keeping me out of a courtroom near you. So here it is…The Last Word for the week ending Aug. 10, 20071. Jermaine Jackson Too Broke To Pay Child Support?!That’s what Michael’s older brother told the woman who’s trying to get him to pay child support for the couple’s two children, Jaffar,11 and Jermajesty, 7. And the court bought it, according to TMZ.com. The site reports that the judge in the case could not verify any source of income from Jackson. As a result of the court’s decision on Tuesday (Aug. 7), the former Jackson Five singer will continue to avoid paying child support and spousal support payments. In addition, Jackson’s mother, Katherine, was ordered to continue paying the crooner’s child support expenses on his behalf, and must allow his ex-wife Alejandra to continue living in their home for free.So how could Jermaine be too broke to support his kids? Didn’t all those years of making hits, touring and singing under papa Joe’s guidance account for anything?Apparently Alejandra felt the same way, as she argued that Jackson receives royalty checks, has various money-making ventures and took home a nice amount of cash for coming in second place on the UK version of Big Brother. She also claimed Jackson received $150,000 from Prince Abdul in the Middle East. The singer disputed the claim as he referred to the Prince’s money as “a loan.” Child support isn’t the only thing worrying Alejandra, who is seeking “full custody of our children, with reasonable visitation to Jermaine, because I have concerns regarding Jermaine’s sleeping accommodations for our children while they are in his care. I believe it is unhealthy for our children to sleep in the same bedroom with Jermaine and his girlfriend….”The next hearing on the case is scheduled for Sept. 24. With Jermaine and Michael caught up in legal drama, who’s the next Jackson to fall prey? I wouldn’t be surprised if Tito ends up in court over some dispute over whether he should’ve gotten that solo spot on the Motown 25 special in 1983 that went to Michael.2. Family Drama Over Gerald Levert EstateGerald Levert may be resting in peace, but the singer’s estate is embroiled in a legal war between his cousin and two women who had children by the singer.Cleveland.com reports that Levert left behind at least $2 million in assets, including two homes, two Mercedes Benz cars, jewelry, clothing, furniture, securities and bank accounts.Although the balladeer’s cousin and executor of the estate, Anthony “Andy” Gibson, began proceedings to split up the estate in March, the two women who birthed Levert’s children – LeMicah Levert, 17 and Camryn Levert, 8, –  say Gibson failed to tell them of the process. The women would like to be involved in the process so that their children receive what’s due to them as Levert’s next-of-kin. A third child, 17-year-old Carlysia Levert, is also due to inherit from the estate.Further complicating things, is a dispute over where Levert’s estate should be divvied up. Although Gibson had planned to dole out the estate in Cuyahoga County Probate Court, the mothers’ lawyers argue that the process, by law, should take place in Geauga County, where Levert had a home in Newbury Township. Cuyahoga County was where Levert lived and spent most of his free time, according to Gibson.A hearing to decide jurisdiction will take place in November, according to BET.com, which also stated that an inventory and appraisal of the estate will take place later this month. In the meantime, let’s hope this doesn’t drag on. I’m still missing the song stylings of Mr. Levert, who died last year from an accidental prescription drug overdose. Truly gone too soon.3. R. Kelly Video Girl Comes to Singer’s DefenseJust when I thought I could take a week off of monitoring R. Kelly, the unthinkable happens.The Chicago Sun-Times reports that the underage girl in Kelly’s infamous video will take the stand next month when the hitmaker goes on trial for alleged child pornography. The kicker is she’s taking the stand in Kelly’s defense (WTF!) and is expected to testify that she is not the girl on the video.The woman, who will turn 23 in September, will have to face conflicting testimony from those called by prosecutors. According to the Tribune, prosecutors are expected to call the woman’s friends, relatives, friends’ parents and others to testify that she was the girl in the video and appears to be about 14 when the clip was made.In another twist, reports say that Kelly labeled the girl as his “goddaughter” on the album liner notes of his TP2.com album.This case looks to be more interesting as it progresses. The trial is expected to last three to four weeks. In the meantime, you can pre-order Kellz’ forthcoming audio soap opera, “Trapped In a Court of Freaks (aka “I Don’t See Nuthin’ Wrong with Making My Sexual Victims Work for Me”).”4. Tracy Morgan Makes a Fashion Statement with SCRAM AnkletLinsey Lohan may have dreaded having an alcohol-monitoring anklet on her leg, but Tracy Morgan is making the most of his legal accessory by turning a negative into a fashion statement.The New York Post reports the former SNL star shared his plans for the SCRAM anklet at a recent New York Yankees game. “Check out my Lindsay Blowhan bracelet . . . I’m taking it to Jacob the Jeweler to get it blinged out!” said Morgan.The 30 Rock cast member continued to be in good spirits, according to a source, who said Morgan also “bragged about the $100,000 Jaguar he just bought – which a friend has to drive because he’s on parole – and the $3 mil he made this summer.”I guess we’ll be seeing Morgan next in an infomercial promoting the latest in jail house accessories. Stay tuned for more iced-out pieces you too can wear and show off to up your street cred and sense of fashion.5. Robin Givens Reminisces Over Brad Pitt; Vivica Fox Ordered to Stay DryWhile Kim Porter voices her embarrassment over her former flame Sean “Diddy” Combs’ relationship with Jennifer Lopez, Robin Givens is sharing her thoughts on her old boyfriend Brad Pitt, as only she could.”I mean, Brad Pitt was hot, but I don’t know if I find him to be so fascinating, to be perfectly honest. I see him differently than everyone else,” the former Mrs. Mike Tyson said during an interview for the new issue of Steppin’ Out magazine.So what does she think about Pitt’s current squeeze, Angelina Jolie?”Whenever I see him in the magazines with Anglina Jolie I just crack up,” the actress told Steppin’ Out. “I think it’s hysterical! I can remember walking down the street with him in New York and everyone going, ‘Come on, Robin, don’t give up on the brothers yet!'”Although I’ve liked Robin since Head of the Class, I can’t hate on Brad. I’m not hating, but Angelina is a serious upgrade. Say what you will, but at least Robin is keeping herself out of the courthouse.Unlike Vivica Fox, who can’t seem to shake that DUI arrest from March. According to TMZ.com, the actress was ordered to stay sober until her arraignment in September.”She can be around [alcohol] because of the nature of her work, but she cannot consume or possess it,” said the judge, who handed down his decision when Fox appeared in L.A. County Superior Court on Wednesday (Aug. 8). “I am not permitting her to consume alcohol.”While it may seem easy to find an alternate beverage, Fox can be tempted like anyone else. But the price could be high if she falls off the wagon, as she could be forced to pay thousands in bail money since she was released on her own recognizance.TMZ reports that Fox could face a maximum of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine if convicted.And that ladies and gentlemen ends our special legal edition of The Last Word. I ask for you to deliberate freely over the cases put before you and render a solid verdict. Court is adjourned!

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