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Authorities search office, home of Michael Jackson's doctor

July 28, 2009 | 11:00 am

Law enforcement officials served search warrants this morning at the Las Vegas home and medical office of Dr. Conrad Murray, the target of a manslaughter investigation into Michael Jackson's death.

Michael Flanagan, assistant special agent in charge of the Las Vegas office of the Drug Enforcement Administration, confirmed that both searches began about 9 a.m. Authorities said they were looking for documents, which typically include computer searches, but provided few other details. The search warrants are sealed, Flanagan said.

Local TV stations showed footage of officials going into the Red Rock Country Club area of Las Vegas, where Murray owns a home. It was unclear whether the physician was there. At his medical office, Global Cardiovascular Associates, a couple of people were present, but declined to say if the office was open for patients.

The Las Vegas searches come less than a week after the DEA, Houston police narcotics officers and Los Angeles police detectives searched Murray's clinic and a storage unit. In those searches, they seized e-mails, storage unit receipts, a copy of Murray's biography and Rolodex cards, according to the inventory of items filed with the Harris County District Court.

Authorities also interviewed the manager of Murray's storage unit, who said Murray's office staff removed several boxes from the facility on the morning of Jackson's death, hours before the pop star was pronounced dead.

The court records were the first public confirmation by police that Murray was a focus of their probe. Detectives previously had interviewed Murray but had declined to identify him as a suspect.

Murray's attorney has said that his client did not give Jackson any narcotics or other medication that "should have" caused his death.

Murray, a cardiologist with practices in Las Vegas and Houston, had been hired to care for Jackson at a monthly salary of $150,000. Murray was at Jackson's home June 25 and found the singer not breathing. He administered CPR before paramedics were called.

The singer was officially pronounced dead at UCLA Medical Center. Sources familiar with the investigation have said that authorities removed propofol, a powerful anesthetic, and other medications from Jackson's home.

Murray's attorney, Edward Chernoff, has declined to comment on whether the doctor administered the drug, which is most commonly used by anesthesiologists in hospitals.

-- Ashley Powers in Las Vegas, Harriet Ryan and Kimi Yoshino in Los Angeles