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Old 07-15-09, 04:14 PM
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Dozens of doctors probed in Michael Jackson's death

Dozens of doctors probed in Michael Jackson's death
Reuters - 41 minutes ago

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - California's attorney general said on Wednesday his office has run dozens of doctors' names, some of them thought to be aliases, through its prescription drug database to aid police investigating the death of Michael Jackson.

Attorney General Jerry Brown said his office was not the lead agency in probing Jackson's sudden death -- a role it took in the fatal overdose of Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith in 2007 -- but was assisting other agencies as they try to track down prescription drugs that may have killed the King of Pop.

"We've found some things, but this is early on" to provide details, Brown told Reuters.

Brown's office monitors all over-the-counter prescription transactions in California, using a database that contains the name of each doctor, patient, medication and quantity.

He said his investigators were given "dozens" of doctors' names to run through its system by police probing Jackson's sudden death, although some are considered to be aliases.

The findings could be used to show that "there were drugs in quantities and character that are lethal in combination," which in conjunction with the official autopsy could lead investigators to determine exactly what killed the 50-year-old singer and dancer.

Brown declined to say if he thought murder or manslaughter charges could be brought in the case, but said those kinds of crimes could not be ruled out "any time you've got a dead body and you've got chemicals in large quantities."

Jackson died at his rented Los Angeles mansion on June 25 after suffering cardiac arrest. Official autopsy results are pending toxicology tests, but rampant speculation has centered on Jackson's use of prescription drugs.

On Tuesday, an official from the Los Angeles County Coroner's Office visited the office of Dr. Arnold Klein, the singer's longtime dermatologist, to obtain Jackson's medical records as part of its investigation.

Brown, a former California governor who is said to be considering a run for that job again in 2010, said his office took the lead in investigating prescription drug use in Anna Nicole Smith's death because no other agency had done so.

In the Jackson case, he said, Los Angeles Police and coroners investigators were involved.

(Editing by Bob Tourtellotte and Sandra Maler))

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