'We have faith in our federal partners': Graceland fraud case takes another turn

The bizarre fraud case investigating an attempt to sell Elvis Presley’s historic Graceland mansion is being kicked up the chain to federal law enforcement.

The investigation is taking a turn more than a month after a judge blocked a foreclosure sale of the property, Amy Lannom Wilhite, communications director for Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti, told CNN Wednesday.

“The Tennessee Attorney General’s Office looked into the Graceland matter, and it quickly became apparent that this was a matter best suited for federal law enforcement,” Lannom Wilhite said. “We have faith in our federal partners and know they will handle this appropriately.”

Actor Riley Keough, who inherited the estate from her mother, the late Lisa Marie Presley, sued an investment and lending company in May after it announced an auction of Graceland.

In her lawsuit, Keough said Naussany Investments & Private Lending LLC alleged that Presley had obtained a $3.8-million loan and “gave a deed of trust encumbering Graceland as security.” Keough denied that Lisa Marie, who died last January at 54, had any involvement with Naussany Investments.

Keough asked a Tennessee judge to block the sale and declare Naussany Investments’ deed of trust fraudulent. She also expressed doubt that Naussany Investments was a “real entity.”

Hours after Chancellor JoeDae Jenkins issued a temporary injunction blocking the sale on May 22, a purported representative for Naussany Investments submitted a statement that said the company would drop its claims on Graceland, the Associated Press reported.

Days later, a self-proclaimed identity thief based in Nigeria sent an email to the New York Times claiming responsibility for the ordeal. The correspondence, which was sent in reply to questions about the case, came from an email address related to Naussany Investments & Private Lending LLC that is listed in court documents.

“We figure out how to steal,” the thief wrote to the New York Times. “That’s what we do.”

The thief said they belonged to a criminal network that targets the dead and elderly, particularly those from Florida and California, according to the outlet.

But there may yet be another twist to the story. NBC News reported two weeks ago that the so-called Nigerian scammer might be a Missouri grandmother with a criminal history of fraud.

The outlet identified the woman as Lisa Holden, though she may have gone by other names in the past. Holden, the outlet reported, had used the last name Naussany to leave negative reviews for businesses.

NBC interviewed people who knew Holden, including Rasheed Jeremy Carballo. Carballo said Holden had confided in him details about the foreclosure scheme and that, after being interviewed by NBC News, he told the FBI everything he knew.

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