August 27, 2006 [b]Mystery Fire on Jackson’s Neverland Ranch Under Investigation[/b] (AXcess News) Hollywood – A fire that has destroyed over 40 acres of Michael Jackson’s Neverland ranch has been brought under control, but authorities are questioning the cause of the blaze and an investigation into the fire has been launched. Michael Jackson was not at his Neverland Ranch when the fire started. Ever since the singer was acquitted of sexual molestation charges against a minor, he has been living in Bahrain. Jackson officially closed the house in March after agreeing to pay back wages due Jackson’s Neverland employees. The fire did not reach the main residence Friday, but came within a quarter-mile of the amusement structures, which were not damaged by the blaze. A Santa Barbara County Fire Department spokesman said the fire did not harm any of the animals on Jackson’s Neverland Ranch. About 100 fire fighters fought the blaze Friday, which included helicopters that dropped fire retardant onto the fire. The Santa Barbara County Fire Department has not said whether Michael Jackson will be billed for the cost of fighting the Neverland Ranch fire.

MJEOL Note:This appears to be a ridiculous question. Normally, people don’t have to pay the fire department for putting out fires. That’s what they get paid to do. Not to mention that, according to the Santa Barbara News Press, they used some of the water from Jackson’s pond to help contain the fire.

Jackson bought the 2,500-acre estate in 1988 for $14.5 million. source: http://www.axcessnews.com/modules/wfsection/article.php?articleid=11055

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