His hands cuffed behind his back, Michael Jackson was taken into custody by the Santa Barbara County (Calif.) sheriff's department just after noon PT today (Nov. 20). He faces multiple counts of child

His hands cuffed behind his back, Michael Jackson was officially taken into custody by the Santa Barbara County (Calif.) sheriff's department just after noon PT today (Nov. 20). He faces multiple counts of child molestation; bail has been set at $3 million.

Jackson left the premises after posting bail. He waved to reporters, flashed a V-sign and climbed into a black Suburban that drove away with an escort of three sheriff's motorcycle officers.

Jackson's lawyer Mark Geragos told reporters outside that the artist had "come back specifically to confront these charges head on. He is greatly outraged by the bringing of these charges. He considers this to be a big lie. He understands the people who are outraged, because if these charges were true, I assure you Michael would be the first to be outraged.

"I'm here to tell you today, Michael has given me the authority to say on his behalf these charges are categorically untrue," he continued. "He looks forward to getting into a courtroom as opposed to any other forum and confronting these accusations head on."

Michael's brother Jermaine angrily defended him in an interview today with CNN. "The whole family supports Michael 100 percent, 1,000 percent. Michael is innocent," he said. "My brother is not eccentric. We had an incredible, wonderful childhood. And what they're doing is bringing him down with the very thing that he loved ... At the end of the day, this is nothing but a modern-day lynching."

Jackson left North Las Vegas Airport aboard a leased jet late this morning heading for Santa Barbara Municipal Airport, according to an employee of XtraJet, a Santa Monica leasing company. The jet was said to be carrying Jackson, his family and a bodyguard.

A private jet belonging to XtraJet landed at the Santa Barbara airport shortly before noon and rolled its nose into the partly opened doors of a hangar. Some occupants got out, barely visible on an image caught by a helicopter television camera.


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