Earlier this month, LLNYC reported that Facebook billionaire Mark Zuckerberg had filed several lawsuits against hundreds of owners of small tracts of land within his 700-acre estate on the Hawaiian island of Kauai.
But in an op-ed published this morning in the Kauai newspaper The Garden Island Zuckerberg announced his decision to drop the cases.
“To find a better path forward, we are dropping our quiet title actions and will work together with the community on a new approach,” he wrote. “We understand that for native Hawaiians, kuleana are sacred and the quiet title process can be difficult. We want to make this right, talk with the community, and find a better approach.”
The legal action Zuckerberg had planned to bring is called a “quiet title and partition” action, and involves suing the owners of the land — some of whom are dead — to get them to sell the land to the highest bidder. These people are known as kamaaina families, or individuals who have inherited the land or interests in the land, though their ownership is largely undocumented.
Zuckerberg paid $100 million for his estate in 2014.