LATEST: US comic Jay Leno has taken the stand in the Michael Jackson child molestation trial, testifying the pop star's young accuser made suspicious phone calls to him.

The TONIGHT SHOW host arrived early in court in Santa Maria, California this morning (24MAY05) and quickly recalled how teenager GAVIN ARVIZO, a cancer sufferer, was "overly effusive" in phone chats, but never asked for money.

Leno recalled the teen's calls took place after the comedian agreed to join many of his peers in helping the young cancer sufferer and his family.

Leno testified he makes up to 20 calls a week to children who are ill, and he began receiving voicemail messages from Jackson's future accuser around 2000.

Leno stated the boy confessed to being a big fan of the chat show host - a fact the comic found a little odd: "I'm not Batman. It seemed a little unusual."

The chat show host also told the jury that he once called Arvizo when the boy was in hospital, but that the conversation seemed "a little scripted".

Jackson's defence team called Leno to support claims the Arvizos schemed to get money from celebrities, including the pop superstar.

The defence has said that Leno became so suspicious he called police to say he believed the family was looking for a "mark," but Leno insisted in court it was police who contacted him.

24/05/2005 21:16