If the underlying sleep problem could be resolved, the chances of ending Jackson's use of the drugs would have been good, he said.
There was no indication that Jackson was addicted to propofol before Murray began giving him nightly infusions of the surgical anesthetic for 60 days leading up to his death, he said.
Unheeded warning signs?
Ortega, in his e-mail to AEG Live CEO Phillips on June 20, wrote that "I honestly don't think he is ready for this based on his continued physical weakening and deepening emotional state."
He said Jackson was having trouble "grasping the work" at rehearsals.
Production manager John "Bugzee" Hougdahl wrote in an e-mail to Phillips hours earlier that Ortega had sent Jackson home from a rehearsal that night because of his strange behavior.
"I have watched him deteriorate in front of my eyes over the last 8 weeks. He was able to do multiple 360 spins back in April. He'd fall on his ass if he tried now," Hougdahl wrote. "He was a basket case and Kenny was concerned he would embarrass himself on stage, or worse yet -- get hurt. The company is rehearsing right now, but the DOUBT is pervasive."
Phillips replied to Ortega: "Please stay steady. Enough alarms have sounded. It is time to put out the fire, not burn the building down."
By "burn the building down," he meant pulling the plug on the tour that was set to begin in three weeks, Phillips testified last month. "In a highly charged situation like this, I just wanted to keep things calm until we could have the meeting."
Phillips met with Murray, Jackson and Ortega at Jackson's home later that day. While Jackson lawyers argue that meeting was intended to pressure Murray to make sure Jackson was ready for rehearsals, AEG lawyers contend Murray assured producers nothing was wrong.
Phillips testified that he remembered little about the conversation at the meeting and Murray has invoked his constitutional protection against self-incrimination to avoid testifying in the trial. This makes Ortega's testimony crucial for both sides.
Hand over evidence or face jail
A related drama could unfold Monday in another courtroom as a judge in Ohio decides if he'll carry out a threat to throw the widow and daughter of a former Jackson manager in jail for refusing to hand over a laptop computer subpoenaed by Jackson lawyers.
Frank DiLeo, who served as Jackson's manager decades earlier, reappeared in his life in his last months. He died in 2011. Jackson lawyers want to search his laptop for evidence to support their contention that DiLeo was beholden to the concert promoter and not to Jackson.
His daughter, Belinda DiLeo, refused a judge's order last week to disclose where the computer was, prompting the contempt of court order. The judge gave the DiLeo's until Monday to hand it over or face jail. A hearing will be held Wednesday to determine of the women complied with the order.
Jackson changed managers twice in the last three months of his life. In late March 2009, he hired Leonard Rowe -- one of his father's friends -- to replace Tohme Tohme, the manager who initially negotiated the deal with AEG for his "This Is It" tour.
Jackson lawyers argue that AEG Live forced Jackson to take DiLeo, who had worked for him off and on for decades, as his manager in May 2009 because they did not want to work with Rowe.
A cache of 5,000 e-mails has already been recovered and a lawyer in Ohio is reviewing them to redact non-relevant and personal information before handing them over to Jackson lawyers.