Neverland Ranch, once Michael Jackson's estate, sells for R320 million after years of price cuts
- Billionaire Ron Burkle bought Michael Jackson's former estate in a cut-rate $22-million (R320 million) deal, according to Reuters. The property was listed at $100 million in 2015.
- Once known as Jackson's "Neverland Ranch," the property was renamed Sycamore Valley Ranch years ago. The 2,700-acre estate once contained a zoo, a train, movie theater and theme park rides.
- Jackson lived at Neverland Ranch until the end of a 2005 court case in which he was tried on child molestation charges. He was eventually acquitted and vowed never to return to his property.
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Neverland Ranch, Michael Jackson's famous former estate, has been sold in California for $22 million (R320m), 10 years after the King of Pop's death, Reuters reported.
The 2,700-acre estate, named in theme with Peter Pan's fantasy world where he can remain a kid, once had a zoo, a train, movie theater and theme park rides.
Billionaire Ron Burkle, who was a family friend of Jackson according to Reuters, bought the property, his spokesman confirmed to the newswire service on Thursday. The property had been renamed Sycamore Valley Ranch years ago.
The estate had been on and off the market for years. In 2015, the asking price was $100 million, and two years later it was relisted for $67 million.
At the time of the purchase, the house was not on the market, but Burkle's spokesman said the businessman spotted the estate from the air and "saw the investment as a land banking opportunity." The property is in Los Olivos, about 120 miles north of Los Angeles.
Jackson had purchased the property in 1988 for $19.5 million, and after suffering financially in the years preceding his death, he released the title to Colony Capital. In February, Compass confirmed to Business Insider that the estate was taken off the market.
Michael Jackson died from an overdose of Propofol, an anesthetic, in 2009. He was 50 at the time and his death was ruled a homicide.
Jackson lived at Neverland Ranch until the end of a 2005 court case in which he was tried on child-molestation charges. He was eventually acquitted and vowed never to return to his property.
Jackson swiftly moved from the property after the 2005 trial.
A decade after Jackson's death a new documentary, "Leaving Neverland," re-examined Jackson's legacy with children through the eyes of Wade Robson and James Safechuck, two men who alleged that they were sexually assaulted by Jackson when they were minors.
After the documentary's 2019 release, the Michael Jackson estate sued HBO for $100 million, citing a 1992 non-disparagement clause attached to an HBO-produced concert movie featuring the pop star.
Variety reported that Jackson's estate won that appeal and can now move forward with its suit.