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New tapes reveal MJ's fear of death

Almost a year after his tragic death, 'King of Pop' Michael Jackson is back in news with the emergence of tapes which reveals the icon's many dark secrets, including financial ruin and his fears of a violent death.

entertainment Updated: May 13, 2010 21:31 IST

jacksonAlmost a year after his tragic death, 'King of Pop' Michael Jackson is back in news with the emergence of tapes which reveals the icon's many dark secrets, including financial ruin and his fears of a violent death at the hands of the Mafia.

The recordings of telephonic messages in which Jackson pleads for financial help and fears for his life are rambling and at other times incoherent.

Desperate to seek refuge from his Neverland ranch and besieged by money worries, the star left a series of messages on a friend's telephone answerphone in 2003, reported Sun online.

They tapes were handed to the newspaper by US journalist Daphne Barak who had written a book on celebrity addiction.

Barak told the newspaper that the tapes had been passed to her by friends, who wished to remain anonymous, to illustrate how the star appeared to be suffering the effects of an addiction to prescription drugs more than six years before his death last June.

"Some of Michael's closest confidants talked to me exclusively about his addictions and provided audio tapes of Michael never heard before. These demonstrate different states of mind he was experiencing under the influence of pharmaceuticals," said Barak.

Throughout the recordings Jackson, who died aged 50, appears anxious and paranoid that his life is under threat.

"It is Michael calling. It is very important, I want that 150 in that account for me, because I am very concerned about my life," says Jackson in one of the messages.

In a second, his voice is slurred and slow, which Barak believes is due to medication. He expresses concern about a figure who he says could be involved with the Italian Mafia.

"It is Michael. I don't trust that man. We think he's bad, we think he is Italian mafia. Please we must be smarter than him. So please, help me with this. I don't want to be in Neverland right now," says Jackson.

Earlier Jackson's first wife Lisa Marie Presley revealed how, 14 years before his death, he had predicted he would die in the same way as her father, Elvis.

Search warrants say cops found 11 containers of a powerful anaesthetic, some of them empty, plus sedatives after he died last year on June 25.

Jackson's doctor has been charged with involuntary manslaughter over the death. Dr Conrad Murray, a cardiologist who was with Jackson when he died at his rented Los Angeles mansion, has denied acting "unlawfully and without malice".