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2013-06-05 at 16:54

Wayne Newton moving from sprawling estate

Ken Ritter, The Associated Press
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LAS VEGAS, Nev. - With a bitter legal fight nearly over, "Mr. Las Vegas" Wayne Newton is moving from his estate of 45 years, "Casa de Shenandoah," to another mansion about a mile away.

The downsizing from a 40-plus acre spread to a $3 million mansion and several adjacent properties is taking place this week, the crooner's sister-in-law, Tricia McCrone, and Newton publicist Kevin Sasaki said Wednesday.

"There's room for all his animals — the peacocks, the horses, and Charlie the penguin," McCrone said of the properties that she said include a main mansion, a guest house and four other homes on a total of about 20 acres.

The main house is a two-story structure on a little more than 2 acres with three bedrooms, 6 1/2 bathrooms, a swimming pool, spa and three fireplaces covering more than 9,000 square feet. It used to belong to Norbert Aleman, producer of the racy "Crazy Girls" topless show and the long-running "La Cage" female impersonators review in Las Vegas.

An overall purchase price wasn't disclosed.

McCrone and her sister, Newton's wife Kathleen McCrone Newton, said they expect the 71-year-old Newton will choose a name for the new spread.

The relocation comes with a federal bankruptcy judge in Las Vegas due to sign off June 21 on a series of agreements filed under seal last month to finalize a Chapter 11 reorganization involving a partnership that bought Newton's property in June 2010 for $19.5 million.

Newton had creditors at his door at the time.

Sheriff's deputies had tried in February 2010 to collect a $500,000 court judgment stemming from back pay owed to a former pilot, and billionaire Bruton Smith, chairman of NASCAR track owner Speedway Motorsports Inc., was seeking to seize Newton's property as repayment of a $3.35 million loan.

As recently as March, Newton and his wife maintained that they would remain in their beloved home.

Now the property owner, CSD LLC, will keep the walled "Casa de Shenandoah" compound.

It wasn't immediately clear Wednesday if the entity still has plans to develop it into a "Graceland West" attraction commemorating Newton's career.

However, in a sign that the plan may be scuttled, documents show that 12 commercial tour buses that had been purchased to shuttle visitors several miles from the Las Vegas Strip to the Newton museum have been repossessed.

The bitter fight over the Newton estate was complicated by the interlocking ownership but competing interests of the various parties.

Wayne and Kathleen Newton, through a business entity called Sacred Land LLC, owned 20 per cent of their bankrupt landlord, CSD LLC. Lacy and Dorothy Harber of Texas, through DLH LLC, owned 70 per cent of the property ownership entity. CSD Management LLC, made up of project manager Steven Kennedy and his partner, Geneva Clark, had a 10 per cent stake.

The agreements filed in May settled several state and federal lawsuits in which the Newtons and the property owners had traded allegations of fraud, conspiracy, breach of contract, and even sexual harassment.

Newton is credited with performing more than 30,000 solo shows in Las Vegas over 40 years. He still performs at venues around the country.

Newton has had other legal and financial trouble in the past.

He filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 1992 to reorganize an estimated $20 million in debts, including a $341,000 Internal Revenue Service lien for back taxes. In 2005, Newton disputed IRS claims that he and his wife owed $1.8 million in back taxes and penalties from 1997 through 2000.

Newton's best-known songs include his signature "Danke Schoen," his 1965 version of "Red Roses for a Blue Lady," and "Daddy Don't You Walk So Fast," which peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard charts in 1972.

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The Canadian Press
© The Canadian Press, 2014
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