MICHAEL Jackson had a “secret” girlfriend before he died – and she has hit out at child abuse claims, saying they ultimately “killed” him.
Shana Mangatal, who had a relationship with the Thriller singer in the 90s, is adamant that despite claims by Wade Robson and James Safechuck in Channel 4 documentary Leaving Neverland, the King of Pop was not sexually attracted to children because he “loved women so much”.
She also revealed how rather than the “asexual man child” many believed the star to be, Jacko was an “experienced” and “amazing” lover – and that no man will ever compare to him.
Shana, 48, recalls him flirting with her, trying to seduce her with sexual lyrics via the telephone and even trying to pull down the tops of female pals to reveal their bra straps – but says his close relationship with young boys came from “a completely innocent place” and he would never do anything to harm a child.
Shana, who worked for Jackson’s management company, also told how parents of the many youngsters that used to hang out with the star would “push” their kids into hanging out and sleeping over with Jackson – and would become “jealous and vindictive” if they thought another child was getting more attention.
Shana is speaking following the release of the documentary Leaving Neverland, in which Wade Robson and James Safechuck accuse Jackson of sexually abusing them as children.
The bombshell documentary – which contains damning testimony from ‘victims’ who claim Jackson systematically abused them for years – has sent shock waves through America and around the world.
In a further blow to Jackson’s supporters, Sun Online has published historic court docs stating the singer ‘developed and operated what is likely the most sophisticated public child sexual abuse procurement and facilitation organisation the world has known
But Shana completely refutes all the allegations and insists there is no way Jackson was a paedophile.
In an exclusive interview with The Sun Online, Shana slammed Safechuck and Robson, saying: “I think it’s awful – these two boys who are accusing him of these things in the documentary were two of his best friends, who he really cared for.
“They were loving towards him and he was loving towards them, but in a pure and innocent way. He would never think that they of all people would turn against him – he really gave them the world.
“These allegations of sex abuse are what killed him. The first allegations by Jordy Chandler were the start – he wasn’t the same after those.
“And then after the second one, it basically ended for him. He was dead inside, just so depressed – there was no spark in his eyes any more.
Can you imagine being accused of these things when your whole life is dedicated to helping and protecting children and now you’re being thought of as the opposite of that?
“He couldn’t stand it and couldn’t understand it. So much so that he thought that people were in a conspiracy against him to destroy him.”
Shana, who works in the entertainment industry in LA, said she first met Jackson aged 17 after one of this shows – but it wasn’t until her 20s when she worked as a receptionist at his manager’s office that they began to develop a “love connection”.
She said that while it was well known he loved hanging out with young boys – there was nothing sexual about it – and it was obvious from the outset he loved women.
After months of flirting with her over the phone and in person at the office, Jackson finally kissed her which Shana described as “all her dreams coming true”.
But just weeks later Shana was left shocked after seeing a magazine article announcing the news he had wed Lisa Marie Presley, leaving her “heartbroken”.
Shana kept up hope that she and Jackson would one day be together and finally – a couple of months after he divorced Lisa, he invited her up to the Universal Hilton hotel, in Universal City, Los Angeles for a date.
The pair ate popcorn, watched movies and shared a bottle of wine – before they spent the night together.
Shana, who kept their relationship a secret at the time, says she has decided to speak out about her intimate moments with the star now – to show he was sexually attracted to women not children.
She said: “I was shivering and shaking every time he touched me. I was so inexperienced. I didn’t have normal reactions that other girls would have.
“He made sure it was what I wanted before we did anything – and it was amazing, everything I thought it would be.
“He was definitely experienced – you could tell he had done this before – even though I had not at that point. And you could tell he loved women.
“I don’t think either of us slept that whole night – he was very loving and passionate.
“I think my innocence was what attracted him to me and I don’t think he would have gone as far as he did with me if I had been aggressive – aggressive women really turned him off.
“The fact that I still have a lot of love for him even after 20 years tells you something. In fact I don’t think any man will ever compare to him – he’s always going to be on a pedestal for me.
“It wasn’t just on an emotional level either it was physical too – in real life he was very sexy and extremely good looking.
“He had this 5 o’clock shadow you could always see really up close, which was just so sexy, and his eyes were like I’ve never seen before. They sparkled and they were bright – there was a certain magnetic quality with his eyes. They just drew you in. And his smile – I could go on and go on.
“He had a dancer’s body, so it was muscular, even though he was very thin, he was tight and firm.
“His thighs stood out in my mind as being attractive because they were really tight and strong from dancing all of those years.”
The next day Jackson confessed to Shana that every night he prayed to God to take his sexual urges away.
“He told me that he said that prayed every night for God to remove his sexual urges so it didn’t have to be a focus in his life,” she revealed.
“He didn’t want any distractions and wanted to be able to be focused and dedicated to his work.
“That’s how he became so great because he was so focused.
“It was a struggle for him because he loved women and that was obvious.
“And he could easily have been that person who had all kinds of sex with lots of different women – but he didn’t want to be that person.
“And I think the other thing that made him feel bad about sex was his upbringing. He was brought up Jehovah’s Witness and they didn’t believe in sex before marriage and I feel this was really embedded in his mind.”
After their first night of passion, Shana spent several more nights with him over the summer of 1996 and fell madly in love with him.
“After that first night I was thinking ‘We’re going to get married, we’re going to have kids’,” she said.
“I thought, ‘I’m never going to be able to love anybody else. Michael is it.’
“He was just everything I’d ever dreamed of and more. It was amazing and he was amazing.
“During that time there was no indication that anything would change with us so I was just head over heels in love with him.
“It was impossible not to fall in love with him. He was just that kind of person who would be so charming and so charismatic and kind and nice and you don’t usually find that in men who are superstars – most of them are jerks or arrogant but not Michael.
“He was just so sweet – he really studied every person and like knew what exactly to say and what you liked and didn’t like. It made me feel special that this man cared about me so much.
“I don’t think I’ll ever find anyone like him again. Being with Michael was both a blessing and a curse. Having to deal with such a huge superstar being your first love – everybody after that is pretty boring.
“Even now I haven’t been on a date in 10 years – it’s not easy.”
During their relationship, the smitten star asked Shana to star in two movies “Ghosts” and “Is This Scary” alongside him – and a bunch of child actors.
There she spent 12 hours a day for weeks with Michael and the youngsters – and said she saw nothing inappropriate going on.
She said Michael loved hanging out with young boys because he was “on the same wavelength” as them and had the same “juvenile sense of humour”.
He would pull the tops down of his make up artist and others to try and reveal their bra straps and tell dirty jokes: “He loved Benny Hill – that was his kind of humour.”
It was during the filming of “Is this Scary” that Jordy Chandler’s allegations of sex abuse emerged – and Shana saw straight away the change in his behaviour.
“We were on the set and those allegations hit and I didn’t know what was going on, but I could see a change in him one minute,” she recalled.
“The first few days he was very happy – just normal, funny. Michael.
Michael was very outgoing – people don’t really realize that about him, but he was very, very funny and everyone wanted to be around him but then in a couple of days in he became sullen and sad, his eyes were just dead and he just looked like he was in another world and I couldn’t understand what had happened from one day to the next.
“The next day he just stopped showing up and he called in sick and not long after that is when it came on the news that there had been a raid at Neverland and there was an investigation happening.
“That’s when everything changed. That video was his last happy moment probably in his life where everything was normal. The public thought of him as this nice sweet, innocent guy.
“But that was the last time that would be the case and it was really profound to be there with him.”
Shana believes the only thing Michael was guilty of was naivety when it came to the kids he hung around with.
“To him sleeping in the same bed as kids, hanging out it was all so normal,” she said.
“He was just so naive about it all and he didn’t realise that these kids had parents and some of them didn’t have the best motives.
“I don’t think it was the kids at all who caused any of his problems. From what I witnessed, the parents became very competitive with each other.
“They would all want to push their sons onto Michael so their son would be the one to spend the most time with him.
And let me tell you, there was not one ounce of them thinking, ‘Oh, what’s going on here?’
“They thought this was their meal ticket because Michael was feeding them very well, buying them whatever they wanted and giving him the credit card to go shopping. I mean treating them like royalty.”
A few months later, Shana was left broken-hearted by the singer a second time – when she saw a magazine article that he had married his nurse Debbie Rowe.
“I was devastated – I was completely blown away. I knew Debbie and just thought she was his nurse.
“But the thing with Michael is you could never be mad with him for long – as soon as you heard his voice you would just melt.
“And he always said something to make you feel good – like ‘Don’t believe all the tabloid garbage in the press’. So that’s what I did.
“I was always very supportive of him – and he deserved that. All his interactions with me were wonderful.”
Shana was a close friend of the star’s until his death in 2009, aged 50, and has written a book about their time together called: Michael and Me: The Untold Story of Michael Jackson’s Secret Romance.
She hopes that through her story people will see the singer not as “Wacko Jacko” but a normal man – who is innocent of all the allegations been thrown at him.
He would be heartbroken about this – but he would never blame the children,” she said.
“Even when he was alive he never once blamed the children – he blamed their parents.
“And he would be happy to see how his fans were sticking up for him.”