LOS ANGELES -- Michael Jackson's estate and a businessman working with the singer's mother settled a copyright infringement lawsuit for $2.5 million on Tuesday, shortly before a trial in the case was scheduled to begin.
The settlement also restricts Howard Mann and his companies from using Jackson's likeness without permission in the future. It ends a year and a half of legal fighting over Mann's use of Jackson's name and likeness on a website used to promote unreleased songs, photographs and a book written by Katherine Jackson filled with recollections of her superstar son.
Under the terms of the settlement, announced in court by estate attorney Zia Modabber, Vintage Pop Media Group is responsible for $2 million of the judgment, while the entity Vintage Associates LLC is responsible for the remainder. Vintage Associates is the custodian of the items that were at issue in the case.
Mann's attorney, Lee Durst, declined comment after the hearing. "The estate is delighted this matter is behind us," estate attorney Howard Weitzman said.
Among the items that had been improperly used were images from Jackson's posthumous film "This Is It" and a silhouette of the singer dancing in "Smooth Criminal." The settlement also blocks the usage of materials from "Thriller" that had appeared on Mann's website.
A jury trial on how much Mann owes the estate had been scheduled to begin Tuesday, with an expert estimating a license for the works is worth between $5 million and $12 million.
Mann's attorneys rejected a settlement offer last week of $2 million. They sought to introduce evidence that they were given bad legal advice about having to license the works and have considered calling Katherine Jackson as a witness. The Jackson family matriarch is one of the beneficiaries of the singer's estate, along with his three children.
U.S. District Judge Dean D. Pregerson has noted that Mann doesn't appear to have the resources to pay a large judgment. The defendants' ability to pay was not discussed in court on Tuesday.
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CIRCA 1968: R&B quintet 'Jackson 5' pose for a portrait in circa 1968. Clockwise from bottom left: Michael Jackson, Tito Jackson, Jackie Jackson, Jermaine Jackson, Marlon Jackson. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
CIRCA 1970: Pop singer Michael Jackson of the R&B quintet 'Jackson 5' performs onstage in circa 1970. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
CIRCA 1970: Pop singer Michael Jackson of the R&B quintet 'Jackson 5' poses for a portrait in circa 1970. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
DECEMBER 1971: Pop singer Michael Jackson of the R&B quintet 'Jackson 5' performs onstage wearing a bright patterned shirt in December 1971. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - JUNE 1971: Pop singer Michael Jackson of the R&B quintet 'Jackson 5' poses for a portrait wearing a Mickey Mouse t-shirt in circa 1971. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - APRIL 20: Michael Jackson poses for a photo shoot at his Hollywood Hills home on April 20, 1972 in Los Angeles California. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Michael Jackson of the Jackson Five, portrait, London, November 1972. (Photo by Michael Putland/Getty Images)
American singer Michael Jackson (1958 - 2009) on stage with the Jackson Five at the Inglewood Forum in California, 26th August 1973. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
American singer Michael Jackson (1958 - 2009) posing in New York in 1974. (Photo by Michael Putland/Getty Images)
JAMAICA - MARCH 01: Photo of Michael JACKSON and JACKSON FIVE; Posed group portrait, full length L-R Tito, Jackie, Michael, Jermaine and Marlon Jackson (Photo by Fin Costello/Redferns)
LOS ANGELES - SEPTEMBER 7: Pop singer Michael Jackson poses for a portrait session at home on September 7, 1976 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
1979: Pop singer Michael Jackson attends an event wearing a sequined shirt and a bow tie in 1979. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, UNITED STATES - OCTOBER 3: Michael Jackson performing on stage with The Jacksons on their Destiny Tour at the Municipal Auditorium on October 3,1979 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Ebet Roberts/Redferns)
American pop singer Michael Jackson carries the two American Music Awards he won for his album 'Off the Wall,' they are for Favorite Male Vocalist - Soul and R&B, and Favorite Album - Soul and R&B, Los Angeles, January 30, 1981. (Photo by Frank Edwards/Getty Images)
1983: Portrait of American pop star Michael Jackson wearing a red leather jacket at the opening of the stage musical, 'Dream Girls,' Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frank Edwards/Fotos International/Getty Images)
LONDON -1983 : Michael Jackson at the BPI awards to collect an award on behalf of Barbra Streisand held in London 1983.(Photo by Dave Hogan/Getty Images)
1984: Pop Star Michael Jackson performs onstage in 1984. (Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
11th Annual American Music Awards--Michael Jackson (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
The 14th Annual American Music Awards--Michael Jackson and Elizabeth Taylor (Photo by Barry King/WireImage)
MN - 1988: Pop singer Michael Jackson performs onstage during his 'Bad World Tour' in 1988. (Photo by Jim Steinfeldt/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Michael Jackson (Photo by KMazur/WireImage)
The 35th Annual GRAMMY Awards--Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)
Michael Jackson is Honored With Hollywood Walk of Fame (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - NOVEMBER 10: Michael Jackson performs on stage during is 'HIStory' world tour concert at Ericsson Stadium November 10, 1996 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
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SUN CITY, SOUTH AFRICA - SEPTEMBER 5: Former South African President Nelson Mandela (L) claps his hands after American pop-icon Michael Jackson was given a lifetime achievement award during the Kora All Africa music awards in Sun City some 120 km northeast of Johannesburg , 04 September 1999. (Photo credit should read ADIL BRADLOW/AFP/Getty Images)
The 16th Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
Michael Jackson Tribute Celebrating 30th Anniversary of His Solo Years
The 3rd Annual BET Awards -Michael Jackson presents the Lifetime Achievement Award to James Brown (Photo by Steve Grayson/WireImage for BET Entertainment)
WASHINGTON - MARCH 31: Singer Michael Jackson waves to fans after a meeting with Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) on March 31, 2004 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. Jackson was on Capitol Hill to meet with African-American lawmakers and offer his support on the fight against AIDS and help for African children. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
SANTA MARIA, CA - JUNE 3: Michael Jackson waves to fans as he arrives fo closing arguements in his child molestation trial at the Santa Barbara County Courthouse June 3, 2005 in Santa Maria, California. Jackson is charged in a 10-count indictment with molesting a boy, plying him with liquor and conspiring to commit child abduction, false imprisonment and extortion. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
Michael Jackson during MTV Video Music Awards Japan 2006 - Press Room at Yoyogi National Stadium in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Nathan Shanahan/FilmMagic)
LONDON - MARCH 05: Michael Jackson announces plans for Summer residency at the O2 Arena at a press conference held at the O2 Arena on March 5, 2009 in London, England. (Photo by Eamonn McCormack/WireImage)