An attorney who successfully defended pop superstar Michael Jackson against child molestation charges and began defending former rap mogul Marion "Suge" Knight last spring no longer is representing him, court officials said.
Thomas Mesereau and Sharon Appelbaum were relieved as counsel, a court spokeswoman said after a closed-door meeting between defense attorneys and Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Ronald S. Coen. Knight is now being represented by attorneys Thaddeus Culpepper and Stephen Schwartz.
Mesereau declined to comment outside court.
The announcement came after a brief hearing in which a March 23 pretrial date was scheduled for Knight and comedian Micah "Katt" Williams, charged with stealing a camera from a paparazzo in September 2014.
Both pleaded not guilty in that case.
Knight, 50, is charged separately with one count each of murder, attempted murder and hit-and-run for allegedly killing 55-year-old Terry Carter and injuring Cle "Bone" Sloan on Jan. 29, 2015, with his pickup truck in the parking lot of Tam's Burgers in the 1200 block of West Rosecrans Avenue.
Mesereau -- who was Jackson's attorney and also represented actor Robert Blake for a time in a murder case -- was the fourth attorney to represent Knight. He began representing Knight in May 2015.