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Jackson defense confident

LOS ANGELES -- Michael Jackson's legal team said the pop star will be fully exonerated when he goes to trial on child molestation charges.

A source close to the case said yesterday that Jackson was indicted, although authorities wouldn't confirm it, and the indictment handed up by a Santa Barbara County grand jury was sealed.

Jackson's publicist and his legal defense team issued a statement Wednesday that did not confirm an indictment but said: "Mr. Jackson and his attorneys are confident that after a trial on these charges Mr. Jackson will be fully exonerated and that the allegations contained in the indictment will be shown to be patently false."

A judge has issued a gag order that prohibits attorneys on both sides from discussing the case with the media. The court could not confirm an indictment or an arraignment for next week.

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