Katherine Jackson filed a petition Monday asking the court to appoint her as guardian of Michael Jackson's three children.
The petition states the kids have "no relationship with their biological mother," Debbie Rowe, according to the site. She is also petitioning to take over the children's estate. Its value is listed as "unknown" in the filing. The filings do not state whether Michael left a will. A hearing has been set for Aug 3. TMZ.com first reported the news Monday. Michael has two children with ex Rowe –Prince, 12, and Paris, 11. His third child, Prince Michael II, 7, was born to a surrogate (the mother's identity was never revealed). The court filings Monday list her whereabouts as "unknown."
Usmagazine.com confirmed last week that the children have been staying with Katherine at the family's Encino, Calif., estate since their father's June 25 death.
On Monday's Today show, the Jacksons' attorney Londell McMillan said there isn't "anybody who thinks that there is someone better" than Katherine Jackson to have custody. Said McMillan, "She is a very loving host of other grandchildren." Over the weekend, Katherine was spotted at a Los Angeles Target stocking up on toys, sleeping bags and other supplies. McMillan added that the family hasn't heard from Rowe, who gave up her custody rights to the children after she and Jackson divorced in 1999. In a statement over the weekend, Rowe's attorney, Marta Almli, said: "Ms. Rowe's only thoughts at this time have been regarding the devastating loss Michael's family has suffered. Ms. Rowe requests that Michael's family, and particularly the children, be spared such harmful, sensationalist speculation and that they be able to say goodbye to their loved one in peace."
Jackson's manager, Frank DiLeo, said on ABC's Good Morning America that the children are doing fine – but grieving. He said he was the one who told the children their father had died. "They knew when I came into the room," he said. "I'm sure they just saw it on my face. They said, 'say it's not true,' and I just said, 'I'm sorry.'"
Rowe isn't holding up well, either. "She is inconsolable," her former attorney Iris Finsilver told Us last week. "She will always love Michael and she always considered him a dear friend." Tell Us: Who should get Michael Jackson's children?
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