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AEG president says Trutanich tried to 'bully' company on Jackson costs

October 22, 2009 |  7:25 am

Jacksonmemorial Los Angeles City Atty. Carmen Trutanich tried to pressure the owner of Staples Center to pay $6 million for city services provided during the Michael Jackson memorial, saying he would "go after you guys" if the money was not paid, the company's top executive alleged Wednesday.

"I wouldn't say it was extortion. I would say it's a bully tactic. That's the way I would put it. He's trying to bully us. And he's done it on three different occasions," AEG President and Chief Executive Tim Leiweke told The Times' editorial board Wednesday.

His accusations escalate a growing public feud between the brash new city attorney and one of L.A.'s most influential corporations.

On the one side is the company that owns two of the city's most prominent entertainment venues, Staples Center and the L.A. Live entertainment complex. On the other is a city attorney who took office in July and has quickly developed a reputation for aggressive and sometimes unorthodox actions. Trutanich recently threatened to throw City Councilwoman Jan Perry in jail and file criminal charges against the city's top building-and-safety official if they violated his directives regarding AEG.

Read the full story here.

--Phil Willon and Cara Mia DiMassa

Photo: The Jackson brothers carry the casket containing the body of Michael Jackson during his public memorial service in July at Staples Center. Credit: Mario Anzuoni / Getty Images.

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