A judge appointed TJ Jackson, the 34-year-old son of Tito Jackson, as temporary guardian of Michael Jackson’s three children in the absence of their grandmother Katherine Jackson.
“We have reason to believe that Mrs. Jackson has been held against her will,” Katherine Jackson attorney Sandra Ribera told Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckloff at a hearing Wednesday.
Beckloff suspended Katherine Jackson as custodian for Prince, Paris and Blanket, because she may be “prevented from acting as a guardian because of the acts of third parties.”
He also ordered “that the children not be removed from California without a court order, by any person.”
Jackson family feud continues Katherine’s absence stirs Jackson feud
The judge also ordered that Diana Ross, whom Michael Jackson named as backup guardian in his will, and Debbie Rowe, the biological mother of the two oldest children, be given notice of the order.
The order will be reconsidered at a hearing next month, and the judge left open the possibility that custody could be returned sooner if Katherine Jackson returns home.
Katherine Jackson finally called her home Tuesday night after being out of communication for nine days, her lawyer said.
TJ Jackson, whom Katherine Jackson left in charge of the children when she left home on July 15, said he was disturbed by how she sounded.
“I’ve never heard my grandmother talk like that,” he said about that phone call. “She wasn’t sharp. Her words were slurred. Her choice of vocabulary, I never heard her use those phrases.”
His lawyer said that “maybe she was trying to speak to him in code.”
Ribera said one of the children told her it sounded like she was not alone during that call.
Katherine Jackson attorney Perry Sanders said the call was made after he met with Jermaine and Janet Jackson at a spa near Tucson, Arizona, on Tuesday night to resolve the controversy over Katherine Jackson’s whereabouts.
They did not, however, allow him to meet or talk with her, he said.
Katherine Jackson, 82, left the home she shares with Michael Jackson’s children on July 15. She had not contacted them before Tuesday, though a Los Angeles County sheriff’s investigation concluded she was safe in Arizona.
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Katherine Jackson has custody of Michael Jackson’s children and a 20% share in her son’s huge estate. Her husband, Joe Jackson, and her eight surviving children were completely left out of Michael Jackson’s will when the pop star died in 2009. Read more from CNN.