SANTA MARIA, Calif. – The organizer of a comedy camp for underprivileged kids who sought to put Michael Jackson's (search) accuser in touch with the singer while the boy was being treated for cancer took the stand Tuesday in the pop star's child molestation trial.
The trial resumed one day after Judge Rodney Melville (search) ruled jurors can hear evidence about five past allegations that the singer molested and "groomed" — or prepared — children for molestation, including former child star Macaulay Culkin (search), delivering a shocking blow to the defense.
In his testimony on Tuesday, Jamie Masada (search), owner of the Laugh Factory (search) in Hollywood, hardly mentioned the pop star sitting across the courtroom.
Masada played down his role in bringing Jackson together with his eventual accuser, and said only that he made a number of phone calls to people including music producer Quincy Jones (search) to try to fulfill the sick boy's wish to meet Jackson.
"I don't know if the message got to him or the fact that he called the next day was by the will of God," said Masada.
Masada said that during a hospital visit the boy was excited and told Masada that Jackson had called.
"He was very cheered up by it," the witness said.
But most of Masada's testimony offered jurors a heartrending account of the boy's illness, his parents' efforts to bring the boy and his siblings to the club and his own efforts to convince comedians to go to the hospital and perform for the child.
"I believe laughter heals," Masada said.
Masada's account included telephone calls from the boy's mother, who said she and her children were being held against their will at Neverland (search), and his decision to introduce her to an attorney.
Masada said that after the infamous Martin Bashir documentary "Living With Michael Jackson" aired on TV, featuring Jackson holding hands with the accuser and saying that he shares his bed with children, the boy was subjected to name-calling by other kids, and Masada and the lawyer wanted to stop the makers of the documentary from replaying the program on TV.
His questioning by Deputy District Attorney Ron Zonen ended with him telling jurors that the mother of the boy once turned down an offer of large amounts of money.
"I told (her) a particular person offered to give her a check for as much as you and the children want, whatever amount of money you need," Masada said.
"What did she say?" asked Zonen.
"She said, 'No. Tell him all I need are friends. I don't need money. I need prayer,'" Masada said.
Masada did not identify the potential benefactor.
He also insisted the only member of the family who solicited money was the father, although he acknowledged that a boyfriend of the mother also asked him for money at one point to pay for judo and karate classes for the boy so he could defend himself against taunts.
During cross-examination, Masada displayed anger at defense attorney Thomas Mesereau Jr. (search) when the lawyer confronted him with statements he made to sheriff's investigators. The statements showed Masada made reference to the boy's parents asking for money, but he insisted he meant the father.
"Don't put words in my mouth," Masada snapped. "Let me tell the truth."
Masada also described an incident in which the boy's family allegedly tried to con comedian George Lopez (search) by leaving the boy's wallet at Lopez's house and then claiming $300 was missing.
Masada said he wrote the boy's father a check for $350 but later learned from Lopez that only $50 had been in the wallet when Lopez found it. Masada said he questioned the father about the disparity at a fund-raiser for the boy and the father threw money that had been raised at him.
Masada said the father called on his son to corroborate his story about the wallet and the boy would not.
Lopez testified Monday that he came to believe the boy's father was more interested in money than helping his son and finally cut off the family because of the father's frequent and aggressive requests for help.
In early testimony Tuesday, defense lawyer Robert Sanger tried to undermine testimony about fingerprints of Jackson, his accuser and the accuser's brother being found on adult magazines seized from Jackson's home. One magazine has been said to have prints from both Jackson and the accuser.
Sanger asked sheriff's fingerprint expert Robert Spinner, who matched the prints, whether two different fingerprints could appear to be the same. Spinner said no.
"That's a theory?" Sanger asked.
"I think that's a proven fact over 100 years," Spinner said.
Jackson appeared upbeat as he came to court Tuesday, waving to screaming fans and raising a fist before the trial reconvened.
The judge's ruling Monday allowed testimony involving five boys to be used in the case, including Culkin; choreographer Wade Robson (search), who has worked with Britney Spears; Jason Francia (search), the son of Jackson's former maid; and the boy at the center of the famous 1993 Chandler case.
Francia was allegedly involved in a 1990 incident and received a $2.4 million settlement from Jackson in 1994. He will testify along with his mother.
District Attorney Tom Sneddon (search) also promised testimony from the mother of a boy who said he was molested in 1993 and reached a multimillion-dollar settlement with Jackson in 1994, the most well-known prior case.
All the incidents allegedly occurred 12 to 15 years ago. Sneddon said he planned to begin presenting evidence of the past allegations in about two weeks.
It was unclear exactly what Jackson was accused of doing with each of the five boys, though the 1993 accuser claimed he was repeatedly molested, and Sneddon said the boy in the 1990 case was touched twice over his clothes and once under his clothes.
In arguing for admission of the evidence, Sneddon said Jackson's past inappropriate activities with boys included kissing, hugging and inserting his hands into their pants.
"All of these children are basically within the ages of 10 and 13" at the time of the alleged offenses, Sneddon said.
Jackson, 46, is accused of molesting the then-13-year-old boy at Neverland in February or March 2003, giving him alcohol and conspiring to hold the boy's family captive to get them to help rebut the Bashir documentary.
FOX News' Trace Gallagher, Anita Vogel and The Associated Press contributed to this report.