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Saturday, April 18, 1998


Finally booked

Pop star George Michael, arrested last week in a restroom at a Beverly Hills park, was charged on Thursday with lewd conduct. The British-born heartthrob whose hit songs include I want your sex and Faith, was charged with a single misdemeanor that carries a maximum of six months in jail and $1,000 fine upon conviction, Deputy District Attorney Ellen Aragon said.

But the standard penalty for a first-time offender is one to two years probation, a $250 fine or community service and an order to stay away from the park restroom, the prosecutor said. A misdemeanor indecent exposure charge was considered but rejected, she said.

Michael was ordered to appear in court on May 5, but he can be represented by an attorney and isn't required to personally show up. His lawyer, Arthur Barens, didn't return telephone calls.

The 34-year-old singer was alone in a restroom in Will Rogers Park when an undercover officer saw him commit the lewd act on April 7, Lt. Edward Kreins said.Details of the act weren't disclosed.

Days later, Michael told CNN: "I won't even say it's the first time it's happened."

Hawke to wed

Ethan Hawke and Uma Thurman, expecting a baby in July, have set the stage for a wedding. The two movie stars were spotted in line on Wednesday at the marriage licence window in the municipal building. Their publicists confirmed that the couple got the licence but have not set a date. Hawke had flown in from Canada, where he is working in a movie, and flew back after doing the paperwork.

Oldest woman dies

Marie Louise Meilleur, proclaimed the world's oldest person at 117, died peacefully at a nursing home in a small northern Ontario town, a nurse at the home said. She lived for seven-and-a-half months beyond her 117th birthday.

"I can confirm that she died peacefully this afternoon of natural causes," a nurse at the Nipissing Manor home in Corbeil, Ontario, said in a telephone interview.

Meilleur, who was born on August 29, 1880, in Kamouraska,Quebec, was deemed the world's oldest person by the Guiness Book of Records after the death of France's Jeanne Calment, who had lived to be 122.

Although there were others who claimed to be older, they lacked the documentation Guiness requires for proof. Meilleur reportedly moved into the nursing home near the Ontario-Quebec border at 107. She was almost blind and could barely hear, officials said.

Sex for art

In what would be one of the most outrageous exhibitions ever held in London, an American artist was planning to sell her body as well as her paintings, The Independent newspaper reported on Friday.

Angela Marshall, who is from Los Angeles, planned to admit people to the gallery one at a time and paint a picture while they are there. If they wanted to buy it, and crucially, if she decided to sell it to them, they would have to perform a sexual act with her.

A small picture would cost Pound 20 and require oral sex, a medium-sized picture was full sex at Pound 50, andfor a large painting, at Pound 75, "anything kinky".

Alex Chappel, curator of Fuckart and Pimp at the Decima Gallery in London, said: "It is essential that the punter have sex with Angela in order for the art to be consummated. It is not art until its owner has done so."

Selected people would also be invited to watch the painting taking place and the subsequent 'consummation'.

The exhibition was fully booked on Friday -- with six one-hour sessions -- and most of Saturday, the newspaper said. Resplendent in a leopard-skin dress, a large red hat and a Wonderbra, the statuesque blonde told The Independent, she had already met all the 'clients'. "I had to meet them first to tell if I would feel like selling a painting to them And I think I will be able to."

"I have never had sex with a bunch of men in a row before but I don't find that a problem. Maybe I will only sell a couple, but I am not really concerned about the sex. It is about the art and interaction with a person."

Questions wereraised about the legality of the show, as a leading lawyer said the gallery would almost certainly need a licence. "It sounds very much like the artist is using the premises as a sex establishment, in which case she would need a licence," Charles Salter, a specialist in obscenity law, told The Independent.

But Chappel said he had checked with a lawyer who had assured him the show was legal.

Copyright © 1998 Indian Express Newspapers (Bombay) Ltd.


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