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Last Updated: Friday, 17 March 2006, 10:05 GMT
Jackson shuts down Neverland home
Neverland Estate
The California estate contains a zoo and amusement park
Singer Michael Jackson has closed down the house on his Neverland ranch in a bid to reduce costs on the property.

Jackson, who currently resides in Bahrain, has made some staff redundant, while parts of the estate remain open.

A spokeswoman for the pop star refused to comment upon his future plans for the 1,100 hectare (2,800 acre) ranch.

Jackson agreed to settle an unpaid wage bill of $306,000 (174,000) after being threatened with legal action, but was fined for allowing insurance to lapse.

The penalty, which was imposed in January, amounted to $169,000 (97,000).


It was issued last week and Jackson has 30 days to lodge an appeal.

The authorities issued a stop-work order to staff after the insurance discrepancy was uncovered.

Employees who work for a third party and are therefore insured have been allowed to continue working.

A local veterinary surgeon has put employees who look after Jackson's menagerie on his payroll, while security is being handled by the Jackson family.

A spokeswoman denied speculation in British newspapers that the singer is planning to relocate to London.

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