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Jackson family memorabilia sold

The collection includes items that belonged to Michael Jackson.
The collection includes items that belonged to Michael Jackson.

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NEW YORK (CNN) -- A large collection of Jackson family memorabilia, including costumes, gold records, photographs and documents has been sold to a European collector.

The man who sold the collection, Henry Vaccaro, Sr., said it was the biggest Jackson collection ever amassed.

"This is the largest collection in the world," Vaccaro told CNN. "Because they (the Jackson family) were collecting it internally."

Vaccaro said the Jackson family had gathered the memorabilia for years to decorate a chain of Jackson-themed restaurants, a venture that never materialized.

The items which once belonged to Michael Jackson and other family members were recently shipped to the new owner after spending 18 months in an Asbury Park, New Jersey warehouse.

Vaccaro, 63, of Asbury Park, told CNN he acquired the collection after a 9-year legal battle with the Jackson family. Vaccaro said a company formed by the Jackson family defaulted on $1.4 million in payments to buy his company, Kramer Guitar Company.

Vaccaro says he paid $65,000 in storage and shipping fees owed by the Jackson family to an Oxnard, California storage facility to eventually acquire the collection.

"I have the intimate divorce papers of Tito, his wife Dee Dee, notes, sketches, gold records," Vaccaro said.

Michael Jackson, the most famous member of the family, pleaded not guilty January 16 to seven felony counts of lewd or lascivious acts with a child under 14 and two counts of giving the child an "intoxicating agent." The charges involve incidents alleged to have occurred in February and March 2003, when the child was 12.

Vaccaro says he had two different experts -- one from Sotheby's and one from Odyssey Auction -- authenticate the collection.

Jackson family attorney Brian Oxman said he could not comment on the collection's authenticity or how Vaccaro came to acquire it.

He did tell CNN the collection belongs to Taj, Taryll and TJ Jackson, Tito Jackson's children.

"I should not make any comment," Oxman said. His client, the Jackson family is "going to handle this the best they know."

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