[Fox Business] Graceland foreclosure attempt faces Tennessee AG investigation

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The Tennessee Attorney General’s Office says it is investigating a private investment company’s attempt to foreclose on Graceland, the historic home of Elvis Presley. 

Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti announced the move on Thursday following a remarkable few days of legal wranglings which almost saw the beloved property in Memphis sold off for foreclosure. 

Naussany Investments and Private Lending claimed Lisa Marie Presley, Elvis’ only child, took out a $3.8 million loan with the firm and used Graceland as collateral. Naussany claimed Lisa Marie never paid that money back before she died last year and so the company attempted to recoup the alleged losses by auctioning off the property.

But Elvis’ granddaughter Riley Keough, who is the sole heir to the property, claimed the loan agreement was a scam and asked a court for an injunction on Wednesday to stop the sale. The injunction was granted and then, in another plot twist, Naussany withdrew its claims after the court hearing.

GRACELAND IS ‘PART OF OUR HISTORY,’ SHOULD STAY IN PRESLEY FAMILY, VISITORS SAY

Skrmetti said that Graceland is one of the “most iconic landmarks in the State of Tennessee” which became a “target” of Naussany.

“I have asked my lawyers to look into this matter, determine the full extent of any misconduct that may have occurred, and identify what we can do to protect both Elvis Presley’s heirs and anyone else who may be similarly threatened,” Skrmetti said in a statement. 

“Elvis made Memphis the center of the music universe, and Graceland stands as a monument to his legacy and a fond remembrance for his family. My office has fought fraud against homeowners for decades and there is no home in Tennessee more beloved than Graceland.”

Keough maintains that Naussany was using forged documents and a fake shell company to make its claims.

Attorney Jeffrey Germany, who represents Keough, filed a complaint with the court regarding the authenticity of the purported deed of trust. Germany submitted an affidavit that says the purported notary did not notarize the signature of Lisa Marie on the purported deed of trust. 

ELVIS PRESLEY’S BIBLE FOUND ON NIGHTSTAND AFTER HE DIED IS UP FOR AUCTION

In a sworn affidavit attached to the lawsuit, the notary public listed on Naussany’s documents said she had never met Lisa Marie or notarized her signature.

However, the saga may not yet be over.

The Associated Press reports that Naussany says a key document in its case, as well as the loan, were recorded and obtained in a different state, meaning “legal action would have to be filed in multiple states.” 

However, it’s unclear if the company intends to refile elsewhere.

Gregory Naussany, whose role at the company is not clear, told Reuters the firm would be “withdrawing all claims with prejudice.”

Meanwhile, Elvis Presley Enterprises, which manages Graceland, welcomed news of the injunction. 

“As the court has now made clear, there was no validity to the claims. There will be no foreclosure,” the statement reads. “Graceland will continue to operate as it has for the past 42 years, ensuring that Elvis fans from around the world can continue to have a best in class experience when visiting his iconic home.”

Elvis bought the mansion in 1957 for $102,500 and lived there until his death in 1977.

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Lisa Marie inherited Graceland after her father’s death, and it was opened to the public as a museum in 1982. It features costumes, artifacts and personal mementos from Elvis and his family.

The property also displays a Convair 880 Jet called “Lisa Marie” that Elvis used in his heyday, while the grounds of Graceland now include a resort hotel and a chapel, according to the home’s website.

Graceland was designated as a National Historic Landmark in March 2006. In 1991, it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Reuters contributed to this report. 

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