Michael Jackson 'stashed pictures of animal torture and nude children' inside locked closet at Neverland resort
Michael Jackson kept pictures of animal torture, nude children and sadomasochistic pornography in a triple-locked secret closet at his Neverland Resort, it has been claimed.
Investigators at the Santa Barbara sheriff's department reportedly made the macabre discovery during a raid on the star's home in 2003, when he was facing child sex abuse charges, according to a US news website.
The closet, which was said to have three deadlocks attached to it, was found at the rear of Jackson’s bedroom, Radar Online reported, citing what it claimed were court papers it had obtained from a source close to the investigation.
It comes as video footage emerged which showed the moment police raided Jackson’s home in 2003, at which point they are understood to have found the locked closet.
The video clip shows officers walking from room to room as they pass bizarre life-size statues of Batman, Superman and the Tomb Raider heroine Lara Croft.
And one photograph purported to have been taken inside Jackson’s closet shows how it contained images of young nude boys and a signed portrait of Home Alone star Macaulay Culkin.
“Don't leave me alone in the house” is written at the foot of the portrait, apparently a gift from Culkin to Jackson.
Among the material seized in the raid were “notes, diaries, documents, photographs, audiotapes and videotapes,” investigators said in a written report submitted to Santa Barbara County court.
They also uncovered a series of pornographic books. One of them, named in the report as “Robert Maxwell Pictures,” contained “old photos, some nude, some of young children (nude and dressed).”
Another, entitled “Room To Play,” depicted “photos of children that are altered, morphed head on older bodies, kids made to look sexualised…some are nude photos of kids."
Other books contained images depicting sadomasochistic pornography, animal sacrifice and child torture.
One such image reproduced in the report appears to show a young girl being strangled with a noose.
“The vast majority of the pictures were of teenagers and/or young adults,” one investigator wrote.
“Some of the pictures depicted individuals wearing no clothing, or in a partial state of undress."
“Based on my training this material can be used as part of a ‘grooming’ process, by which people are able to lower the inhibitions of their intended victms and facilitate the molestation of said victims," they added.
In 2003, prosecutors in Santa Barbara had described Neverland as a fantasy resort which Jackson created to groom young boys before plying them with alcohol and molesting them.
However, the star was acquitted of all child abuse charges in 2005, and died four years later.
Representatives for Jackson have fiercely denied the claims, dismissing them as “sleazy clickbait.”
They said fans would rather remember Jackson as a talented singer than “see his good name dragged through the mud by tabloid trash."
Radar Online also quoted “insiders with close knowledge of the raids” who claimed that sexually explicit images of Jackson’s own nephews were also found at the resort.
“The documents exposed Jackson as a manipulative, drug-and-sex-crazed predator who used blood, gore, sexually explicit images of animal sacrifice and perverse adult sex acts to bend children to his will,” the source claimed.