Matt Lauer Allowed to Keep His $9.2-Million New Zealand Farm

Country rules disgraced TV anchor didn't breach "good character" clause for foreign landowners.

matt lauer
Matt Lauer appears on NBC News' "Today" show -- (Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire via Getty Images)
NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Disgraced Today show anchor Matt Lauer will be allowed to keep his New Zealand ranch. Lauer was fired from NBC last November after numerous sexual misconduct and assault allegations were leveled against him. His abrupt dismissal for sexual abuse also put him at risk of losing the overseas sheep and cattle farm that he began to lease last year for $9.2 million. Authorities in New Zealand, which has become a popular destination for wealthy Americans looking to buy foreign property, launched an investigation into Lauer to determine whether his actions had breached a “good character” condition the country has for foreign buyers of major assets.

“Mr. Lauer has not been charged with any offence, nor convicted, and the evidence available to the OIO at this time does not establish that Mr. Lauer is unfit to continue to hold the asset,” Lisa Barrett, an official at Land Information New Zealand, said in a statement, according to Town & Country. “However, in reaching this position, we do not condone the inappropriate way that Mr. Lauer has behaved.”

The 27,000-acre farm, which is known as Hunter Valley Station, includes more than eight miles of lakefront land bordering Lake Hawea and Lake Wanaka, as well as another eight miles of riverfront along the Hunter River. There is a five-bedroom house on the farm as well.

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