+the news
Michael Jackson trial delayed

The trial of Michael Jackson's doctor Conrad Murray has been postponed until May (11) despite pleas from his lawyers for it to begin later this month (Mar11).

Earlier this week (begs28Feb11), prosecutors called for the scheduled date of the upcoming involuntary manslaughter trial to be pushed back.

Reports suggested they objected to the 24 March (11) start because they are entitled to receive details of the defence evidence 30 days before the trial begins, a deadline which has already passed.

Conrad Murray's legal team appealed to Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael Pastor to keep the original date as they "don't have the budget" for lengthy court proceedings.

However, Judge Pastor ruled on Wednesday (02Mar11) that opening statements will be postponed until 9 May (11) - which Murray's lawyers have accepted.

In court papers, obtained by the Associated Press, Conrad Murray is quoted as saying, "It is only acceptable to me if this is not strung along over a long period of time. I don't want to lose my constitutional right to speedy trial."

The screening of prospective jurors will still begin as scheduled on 24 March.

Conrad Murray is accused of administering the drug Propofol which killed the King of Pop in June 2009.