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Friday, May 24, 2024

The mystery of who’s trying to take Graceland from Riley Keough

A company has attempted to take the iconic multi-million dollar Graceland ↗ estate away from Elvis Presley ↗‘s family.

The attempt has resulted in the actress Riley Keough, ↗ the granddaughter of Elvis Presley and current owner of the estate, to sue to halt the sale of her family’s property. Keough inherited her grandfather’s home after the death of her mother, Lisa Marie Presley ↗ who was the sole heir to the Presley mansion. Keough became the home’s sole trustee established by Lisa Marie in 1993 to manage the Presley estate. Lisa Marie’s sudden death and the change over of ownership resulted in a contentious battle with her grandmother and Elvis’s wife, Priscilla Presley ↗.

However, this time, the battle to keep Graceland in Keough’s ownership is coming from outside forces, namely a company called Naussany Investments & Private Lending LLC. In a lawsuit that Keough filed this month, the actress claimed that the company planning to auction off Graceland does not exist.

Here’s what we know about the lawsuit, the company and the recent ruling that halted an auction of the iconic Presley family home:

Lawsuit to halt the foreclosure sale of Graceland

Keough filed a claim ↗ last week in Shelby County Chancery Court in Tennessee to halt the sale of her family home, describing a fraudulent self-described lender that forged signatures on a nonexistent loan to force a foreclosure claim on Graceland. 

Keough alleged that Naussany Investment is fraudulently claiming that Lisa Marie had borrowed $3.8 million from them and had failed to repay the loan, using the property as collateral. Keough said in the court filing that Lisa Marie never borrowed money from Naussany Investments or gave it a deed of trust as the company alleged. The lawsuit also said the loan and deed of trust were never notarized.

“Elvis Presley Enterprises can confirm that these claims are fraudulent. There is no foreclosure sale. Simply put, the counter lawsuit has been filed is to stop the fraud,” the lawsuit said.

The company’s background according to reporting from NBC News

NBC News ↗ reported that it has been “difficult to figure out much about the company or who runs it.” While further researching the company on public records databases it found “no people in the U.S. with the last name Naussany and for any company with the name Naussany or the initials NIPL.” No social media accounts were found linked to the company or any representatives. 

The only available information that NBC News found was from the Graceland court filings. However, even the case itself doesn’t share much about the company. Some documents provided addresses from a company in Jacksonville, Florida, and Hollister, Missouri. Another address is in Kimberling City, Missouri. 

In Keough’s lawsuit, she claimed that a person named Kurt Naussany sought out the millions allegedly owed to him and threatened to sell Graceland. The claim had an email and phone number for Kurt Naussany. However, NBC News said the number was disconnected and also sent an email to the address on Monday. The news broadcaster received a reply, saying Kurt Naussany left the company in 2015. The email stated that he “should not be on any paperwork to do with Lisa Marie Presley.” It continued that NBC News should contact Gregory E. Naussany, “as he handled all loans with Ms. Presley.” 

NBC News said it received another message from the Kurt Naussany email saying he knew Lisa Marie for years and “never did any loans for her.” The message added, “Please make sure you and all colleagues have names straight.”

On Tuesday, a Gregory E. Naussany sent the court a fax response to Keough’s claims in which the person denied her accusations of fraud and asked if the company could continue with the auction.

The filing had a number and email address for Gregory E. Naussany, however, NBC News found that “no one picked up the phone or responded to texts sent to that number. But a request for comment to the email address Wednesday drew a response indicating that the company would drop the case after ‘consultation with lawyers.'”

NBC News also asked for more information about the company and why there was no public information about them. They also asked to speak with Gregory by phone, however, he declined. The response said that more information would come in a future court document. “It’s apparent that Keough and LMP family was not aware of LMP mishandling of money and finances.”

According to the court, there has been no new court filing from Naussany and no information about who is behind the company.

On Wednesday, a judge blocked the foreclosure auction of Graceland

After Keough’s lawsuit filed last week, a Tennessee judge granted Keough a restraining order to halt the sale of her family home on Wednesday. The judge issued a temporary injunction against the proposed auction that had already been seemingly scheduled for Thursday, May 23. 

“It appears that you, Mr. Germany, your client will be successful on the merits,” Court Chancellor JoeDae Jenkins said to Keough’s attorney, “providing that you prove the fraud that has been alleged.”

“The court will enjoin the sale as requested because, one, the real estate is considered unique under Tennessee law. And in being unique, the loss of the real estate would be considered irreparable harm,” Jenkins said to a local CBS affiliate ↗.

The judge found that the notary that signed the deed of trust from the said deal between Lisa Marie and Naussany Investment made in 2018 denies notarizing Lisa Marie Presley’s signature. The judge said he questioned the signature’s authenticity and the deed of trust. The Shelby County Register of Deed shared ↗ that the office had no record of a deed related to Graceland.

The ruling upholds the previous ruling that was issued after Keough’s lawsuit claimed that the sale was a fraudulent scheme.

“As the court has now made clear, there was no validity to the claims. There will be no foreclosure. 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,” a spokesperson for Elvis Presley Enterprises Inc. said after the issued injunction.

Naussany Investment responded to the halt of the sale, “Due to the Deed of Trust not being recorded and the loan being obtained in different state, legal action would have to be filed in multiple states and NAUSSANY Investments & Private Lending will not acquire to proceed. That comes from consultation of the lawyers for the company. There was no harm meant on Ms. Keough for her mothers LMP mis habits and mis managing of money. The company will be withdrawing all claims with prejudice.” 

Kaylie Pferten
Kaylie Pferten
A pilot of submersible crafts in a former life, now married to my husband David and writing about investment advice.

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