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2004 Top Ten Scandals From YAHOO!

Yahoo presents the top scandals of 2004, and you can see the list below, and if you click here > list. The Kobe Bryant Case is number ten and the Janet Jackson "boob" problem is number one. In my opinion, the Martha Stewart Case should be ranked a bit lower than number three.

What say you? (Oh, if you want to make a comment, just press the "comment" link below.)

The List


10) KOBE CASE CLOSED - Arrested and charged with rape in July of 2003 for allegedly forcing himself on a 19-year-old hotel clerk while in Colorado, L.A. Lakers star KOBE BRYANT's preliminary hearings became a media circus. If convicted of one count of sexual assault, he could have faced a maximum sentence of life in prison and a fine of up to $750,000. But the charges against Kobe were dropped in September when the accuser told the prosecution she would no longer participate in the case. Speculation as to why included the fact that her name had been released to the public and a ruling that her sexual behavior before and after the incident could be admissible in court. In response to the dismissal, Kobe issued a statement apologizing to the victim, yet maintained his innocence: "Although I truly believe this encounter between us was consensual, I recognize now that she did not and does not view this incident the same way I did. After months of reviewing discovery, listening to her attorney, and even her testimony in person, I now understand how she feels that she did not consent to this encounter." A civil suit against Bryant is still pending, and the young woman is expected to testify in that case.

9) NICKY HILTON'S VEGAS WEDDING - A party weekend in Vegas in August turned to marriage for PARIS' li'l sis, NICKY, now 21, when she married old flame TODD ANDREW MEISTER, 33, at a Vegas wedding chapel. The Hilton sisters were in town for a Stuff magazine party at the Palms Casino Resort where they were joined by Todd and Paris' "Simple Life" co-star, NICOLE RICHIE, for dinner late Saturday night. Dinner led to an after-party at the Palms' Little Buddha and, then, apparently to matrimony, as Paris and pal BIJOU PHILLIPS reportedly joined the couple at the impromptu, early morning ceremony just a few hours later. The ET Insider was in the limo, inside their hotel room and at Caesars Palace just hours before the wedding with Nicky, Paris, Bijou, TARA REID, KIMBERLY STEWART and "That 70's Show"'s DANNY MASTERSON. We caught up with the newlyweds after they flew back to L.A. on Sunday, and, although tired from the journey, they looked very much in love. "We are very, very happy," they commented. Later, KATHY and RICK HILTON told ET they were delighted with the marriage, announcing, "Todd exudes a great warmth and personality. He is a longtime friend of the family and is loved by all of us. He is a Harvard graduate and a successful businessman and Kathy and I welcome him to our family. Kathy would have loved to plan a formal wedding, yet Nicky opted for a small quiet ceremony." Alas, three months later, the couple reportedly had the marriage annulled and remain on good terms.

8) J.LO'S JUNE WEDDING - The runaway bride gave everyone the slip with a surprise wedding to old flame/freshly divorced Latin crooner MARC ANTHONY in June. About 40 guests watched as the couple exchanged vows under a flower-covered bridal arch in Jennifer's Beverly Hills backyard. In full wedding regalia, including a full-length, champagne VERA WANG gown and white umbrella, Jennifer walked down a rose-petal-strewn aisle, sparkling from head to toe with diamonds in her hair, diamond earrings, a necklace and bracelet, while Anthony sported diamond cufflinks. When contacted by ET, Lopez's spokesperson would neither confirm nor deny that the couple had indeed tied the knot. After the wedding, the happy pair skipped an immediate honeymoon as Jennifer was working on her latest film, 'Monster-in-Law,' and Anthony was busy promoting his new album. This was the third wedding for Ms. Lopez, who was famously engaged to BEN AFFLECK last year before abruptly calling off those planned nuptials. She and Marc first dated in 1999 and rumors that they were back together began again when the twosome were spotted dining together after the Golden Globe® Awards, just five days after her very public split from Ben -- and only weeks after Anthony's ex wife DAYANARA TORRES filed for divorce from their 3-1/2-year marriage.

7) JERI RYAN'S SEX SCANDAL - Embarrassing and lurid details from "Star Trek: Voyager" star JERI RYAN's split with Illinois Republican and U.S. Senate candidate JACK RYAN became public in June. In court papers originally filed in 1999, Jeri made allegations that she was pressured by her ex-husband to engage in intimate acts with him at "sex clubs" while others watched, including a New York nightspot described as a "bizarre club with cages, whips and other apparatus hanging from the ceiling." After the news broke, Jeri's ex-husband held a press conference promising to stay in the Senate race and addressed the allegations, saying, "I really try to live my life to the highest standards," he said. "But I know, like all of us, I fail sometimes." Still, the scandal took its toll, and Ryan dropped his bid for an Illinois U.S. senate seat, stating that instead of debating the issues, it was "a brutal, scorched-earth campaign." Jeri and Jack wed in 1991 and were married for eight years. Just before the papers went public, the "Voyager" actress made no mention of the five-year-old claims and said of her former husband, "Jack is a good man, a loving father, and he shares a strong bond with our son. I wish him all the best."

6) BILL O'REILLY SEX SCANDAL - The man usually associated with firing tough questions at others, FOX News Channel's BILL O'REILLY came under fire himself this fall. The 55-year-old host of "The O'Reilly Factor" was sued for sexual harassment by 33-year-old ANDREA MACKRIS, a producer for the show. Mackris claimed that O'Reilly repeatedly tried to engage her in inappropriate conversation, "forced" her to have phone sex and generally created a "virulently hostile work environment." The suit followed one filed against her by O'Reilly, who claimed she tried to extort $60 million from him by threatening to go public with the allegations. But before the case could truly catch fire, the opponents agreed to settle and drop their high-profile lawsuits against each other. A statement released by O'Reilly's attorney said, "The Parties regret that this matter has caused tremendous pain, and they have agreed to settle. All cases and claims have been withdrawn and all Parties have agreed that there was no wrongdoing whatsoever by Mr. O'Reilly, Ms. Mackris or Ms. Mackris' counsel, Benedict P. Morelli & Associates ... Out of respect for their families and privacy, all Parties and their representatives have agreed that all information relating to the cases shall remain confidential."

5) BRITNEY'S SURPRISE WEDDING - On the weekend of September 18, ET broke the news that BRITNEY SPEARS tied the knot with her dancer fiancé KEVIN FEDERLINE in a surprise ceremony in Studio City, CA. While the media's attention was on the following day's Emmy® Awards, the newly brunette bride wore a white, strapless MONIQUE LHUILLIER dress and Kevin donned a black tuxedo and fedora as the two exchanged vows during a non-denominational ceremony. Twenty to 30 guests, including Britney's mother and sister, were on-hand for the event, which took place around midnight in a white tent erected in the backyard of a private home. All attendants were shuttled to the house from a hotel about 20 miles away, and were required to sign confidentiality agreements. Afterwards, everyone dined on a feast of chicken fingers, ribs and Waldorf salad while music played from a boom box. The smiling couple later had to clear up rumors about the legitimacy of their marriage, telling People magazine that they had signed their marriage license, but just simply had not filed the paperwork before the wedding. Britney told People, "I know we're not completely legal until we file the license, which we'll do next week, but in a real sense, a spiritual sense, we're married."

4) MARY-KATE ENTERS TREATMENT - In June, "Full House" twin and merchandising entrepreneur MARY-KATE OLSEN checked into a treatment center just shy of her 18th birthday to "seek professional help for a health related issue." A few months before, ET reported there were worries over Mary-Kate's alarmingly low weight. Mary-Kate's shrinking frame became a concern for observers when she and sister ASHLEY went public to promote their new movie, 'New York Minute,' receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and graduate high school. The Olsens have acknowledged that being a teen fashion icon is a stressful role to maintain, especially with millions of young girls looking up to them, and many believe the pressure to be perfect under the spotlight became too much of a burden for Mary-Kate. Despite reports of a family intervention, a spokesperson said the star voluntarily checked herself in for treatment as a proactive way of dealing with the issue before her freshman year with her sister at New York University. Six weeks later, Mary-Kate was discharged and her spokesperson said, "She is feeling very well and is looking forward to rejoining her family and friends and preparing for her freshman year at New York University." Mary-Kate is now reportedly receiving follow-up counseling and reportedly has an "eating coach."

3) MARTHA GOES TO JAIL - After she was found guilty in March on charges stemming from her controversial 2001 sale of ImClone stock, domestic diva MARTHA STEWART decided to start her sentence early, rather than wait for her appeal. On October 8, as the world watched, Martha turned herself in to the Alderson, WV, federal prison, a.k.a. "Camp Cupcake," to begin five months of prison time for her obstruction of justice conviction. Just like all new inmates, she was reportedly photographed, fingerprinted, strip-searched and placed in a cottage with 60 other women who must share two showers and two sinks. Before turning herself in, Martha sent a message to her fans via her Web site, saying, "While I am away, my updates here will be less frequent, if not altogether impossible. But please know this change is only an unfortunate reflection of my current circumstances, and in no way diminishes my commitment to my life's work or to the friends, colleagues, customers and supporters who make it possible." When Martha's five months in prison are up in February, she will head back home to Connecticut for five months of house arrest.

2) MICHAEL JACKSON'S WOES - The self-proclaimed King of Pop cannot be sleeping well. Last year, he was the center of controversy several times, from the infamous "baby-dangling incident" to his life-shattering arrest on suspicion of child molestation, leading to formal charges: seven counts of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under the age of 14 and two counts of administering an intoxicating agent to a child to commit the alleged molestation. In January of this year, with his family unified behind him, Jackson pleaded "not guilty" to the charges filed by Santa Barbara County District Attorney TOM SNEDDON. The courthouse was mobbed by the media and fans alike who came to support Jackson in a "Caravan of Love." As the year progressed, Jackson battled a number of unrelated lawsuits, several claims of more sexual abuse and alleged, lurid details surrounding a 1993 investigation of child molestation which never resulted in charges. To top it off, Jackson erupted into a war of words with controversial rapper EMINEM, whose "Just Lose It" video parodies the pop star's foibles and features a scene with little boys bouncing around on his bed. Jackson is currently free on $3 million bail, with his trial set to begin in January.

1) "BOOBGATE" BOOKEND - JANET JACKSON's now infamous overexposure at January's Super Bowl caused a rippling wave of consequences for everyone involved -- and even some who had no part in the shocking halftime show incident. During the halftime show, a duet with JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE culminated in his ripping off the breastplate of her costume -- exposing her right mammary (and sun-ray nipple ornament) to the nation and giving birth to the term "wardrobe malfunction." Janet later apologized in a videotaped statement saying: "My decision to change the Super Bowl performance was actually made after the final rehearsal. MTV, CBS and the NFL had no knowledge of this whatsoever. Unfortunately the whole thing went wrong in the end. I am sorry if I offended anyone, that was truly not my intention." But the networks felt serious repercussions, with the FCC coming down hard on "indecency in the media" and CBS airing the subsequent Grammy® Awards with a video delay. The ripple effect is still being felt, with HOWARD STERN announcing he's moving his syndicated radio show to the un-regulated Sirius Satellite Radio and with many network affiliates pre-empting the Veteran's Day airing of an un-cut version of 'Saving Private Ryan' on ABC.

In November, TARA REID made a red-carpet entrance she'd probably prefer to erase, bringing back memories of Janet's debacle. The actress was posing proudly on the red carpet at SEAN "P. DIDDY" COMBS's 35th birthday bash in New York when her gown strap slipped off her left shoulder, exposing her breast for the flash bulbs. Although she had clearly been struggling with the strap before the slip, she appeared shocked when her publicist covered her up and pointed out that she was fully exposed for several excruciating seconds. Reid pleaded with members of the press not to publicize the photo, to no avail. Although the slip-up was not televised to the nation -- and the FCC did not get involved -- Tara's exposure provided a convenient bookend to Janet's January "wardrobe malfunction."

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