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Last Updated: Thursday, 19 January 2006, 08:37 GMT
Jackson cleared of animal cruelty
Jackson has left Neverland and is now living in Bahrain
Pop star Michael Jackson's private zoo of animals is in good health, US officials said after a surprise visit to the singer's Neverland ranch.

Officials inspected the property following concerns voiced by the animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment (Peta) of Animals.

"Our medical officer found the animals were in good health," said a spokesman for the US department of agriculture.

Concerns were raised after a news report on US news network Fox.

"There are no violations of the Animal Welfare Act," said the spokesman.

Inspection urged

Peta urged the inspection last month, following a report by Fox News suggesting that animals at Jackson's ranch might be suffering from lack of food and care.

The organisation said they still had concerns about the state of the animals because US department of agriculture regulations were a "minimum".

Peta spokeswoman Lisa Wathne said: "In cases where they declare that there are no violations of the Animal Welfare Act, animals can still be languishing in really abysmal conditions."

She said Peta planned to urge the US Fish and Wildlife Service to investigate the status of any endangered species at the ranch, notably an African elephant and possibly an orang-utan.

Jackson was acquitted of sex-abuse charges last June and is currently living in Bahrain in the Middle East.

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