No more Neverland for Jackson?

November 13, 2008 1:54:06 PM PST
It was once his home and sanctuary. But now, Michael Jackson is letting go of the Neverland ranch. [SIGN UP: Get entertainment news sent to you]

The singer has given up title to the property, transferring the deed to a company that he has partial control over. Under terms of a grant deed on the ranch, the new owner is an entity called the Sycamore Valley Ranch Company LLC.

A person who knows about the transaction, but who isn't authorized to speak on the record about it, says the company is a joint venture between Jackson and a company that bailed out Jackson earlier this year by buying his loan after the singer went into default.

Jackson brought what became known as Neverland back in 1988. And when he did, he began turning it into a miniature amusement park. It featured a zoo with llamas, chimps and other species as well as a Ferris wheel, roller coaster and other carnival-type rides.

At the height of his popularity, Jackson would invite thousands of children to come play on the grounds. It was named after the mythical land of Peter Pan, and was aimed at recapturing the childhood Jackson says he was denied as a young star.

He once described being at Neverland as like "stepping into Oz," saying once you get inside, "the outside world does not exist."

The "outside world" intruded onto the property in a big way in 2003, when Jackson was charged with molesting a 13-year-old boy at the ranch. The property was searched as part of the investigation in the case, which saw Jackson cleared of all charges.

He hasn't been seen in the area since a jury acquitted him in 2005. He was quoted as saying that he would never return there to live.

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