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Michael Jackson owed $750 million at death

Michael Jackson was more than $US500 million ($A750 million) in debt at the time of his death, court papers reportedly show.

Photo: EPA

Photo: EPA

The pop icon died in June 2009, aged 50, after suffering a cardiac arrest, and documents seen by PEOPLE have now revealed he owed hundreds of millions of dollars in unpaid debts.

Jackson was one of the best-selling music artists of all time – but he was also well-known for his extravagant spending habits, which included spending millions on jewellery and artwork.

However, Jackson was writing new songs and preparing for a residency at The 02 in London, as he worked towards bringing his financial troubles under control.

Randy Phillips, the former chief executive of AEG Live, which was promoting Jackson’s London residency, previously revealed the pop icon was determined to address his money problems.

He also suggested Jackson, who first found fame as a child in The Jackson 5, was “ready to stop living like a vagabond and settle down”.

“He wanted people to see his work and not just talk about his lifestyle,” Phillips told Rolling Stone magazine in 2009.

He rubbished the idea that Jackson was “feeble and manipulated”, and insisted the singer was fully aware of his precarious financial situation.

“Michael was a very smart marketing person. People say he was feeble and manipulated, but he was powerful and a manipulator. He was ready,” Phillips said.

“He wanted to clean up his finances. He was ready to stop living like a vagabond and settle down and earn money again.”

– AAP

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