Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch is quite possibly just as famous as its former owner, however, the property might be put on the market.
It was abandoned in 2005 when Jackson was facing prosecution for alleged child molestation, but it remains a strong presence in his fan’s lives, who leave flowers and other mementos at its gate year after year.
In a statement on Thursday, the Jackson estate said “We are saddened at the prospect of the sale of Neverland which, under the agreement negotiated during Michael’s lifetime, Colony has the right to sell.”
According to CNN, Tom Barrack’s Colony Capital bailed Jackson out of financial trouble back in 2008 and as a result, has a major stake in the property. The “King of Pop” died in 2009 after his doctor gave him a lethal dose of propofol.
Spokesman for Colony Capital, Owen Blicksilver, only confirms Barrack is “considering” selling the 2,700 sq. ft ranch in Santa Barbara at this time.
“We hope and trust that any new owners of Neverland will respect the historical importance and special nature of this wonderful property,” the estate continued. “Michael’s memory lives on in the hearts of his fans worldwide.”
Forbes reports while the Jackson estate does have a minority stake in the property, the statement said he “lost control of Neverland during his life as a result of advice from a former manager.”
Colony Capital has funded the upkeep of Neverland for years, which is estimated to be at about $5 million a year.
image via Paul Adao/INFphoto.com