NEW YORK - In an eleventh hour decision, Martha Stewart and Michael Jackson have fled the country for more forgiving shores and, according to a source in the French government, both are now official residents of France with no fears of extradition.
Stewart, who was convicted on four counts of obstructing justice and lying to federal officials, was facing up to a year in prison for her crimes until she and Jackson, currently free on $3 million bail pending a trial concerning alleged child abuse, decided to leave the United States and start new lives together in France.
"Martha has asked Michael to be her wife," Jackson's publicist confirmed. "Because they have both been so dogged by American law enforcement, they share a unique understanding and bring solace to each another."
Stewart also announced her plans to move OmniMedia headquarters to Paris and she stated that her popular magazine, Living, will be permanently re-titled as Living Free or Vivant Libre for wider appeal to European audiences and U.S. expatriates.
Jackson, currently in talks with Roman Polanski concerning plans to create a spot in France similar to Branson, Missouri, in the southern village of Avignon, did not comment but was observed giggling with Martha as the two conversed in low whispers.
"We're happy and we're free!" Stewart told reporters. "C'est une bonne chose."