There’s been mixed news for Katy Perry in the legal battle concerning a former convent in Los Angeles that she wishes to purchase, with a ruling handed down on Thursday in favour of the archbishop (who wants to sell to her) over the order of nuns who had arranged a deal with another purchaser.

While this is positive news for her, the judge in the case ultimately deferred the decision over the actual sale of the property, ruling that church law had jurisdiction over sale of the property, rather than civil law.

Katy PerryKaty Perry received mixed news in the convent court case judgment

The ruling was technically in favour of Perry – declaring that the nuns’ hasty attempted sale of the property to developer Dana Hollister was indeed invalid – but the judge advised her and the archdiocese that the situation could take months, or even years, to resolve satisfactorily.

“You’re not selling to Katy Perry any time soon,” superior court judge James C. Chalfant warned, after initially ruling: “There is no doubt in my mind sale to defendant Hollister was improper and invalid.”

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This means that the ultimate fate of the lavish eight-acre property in the hills near Hollywood, in need of restoration but valued at around $15 million, will likely be tied up in several months’ worth of costly litigation.

The judge declared Hollister’s attempted $10 million purchase invalid, and ordered her to pay the order of nuns from whom she thought had the right to sell the property a sum of $25,000 per month for upkeep. She had planned to convert the property into a boutique hotel, and has already registered a deed for it, which will need to be unwound.

Jose Gomez, the Archbishop of Los Angeles, wants to sell the property to pop megastar Perry, who put in a $14.5 million bid earlier this year and who wants to make the convent into a private home. The ruling declared that the nuns’ sale illegally bypassed his approval.

The former convent, located in the desirable Los Feliz neighbourhood of L.A., used to be home to more than 100 nuns of The Sisters of the Most Holy and Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary. However, they’ve not lived there for several years and only five sisters, aged between 77 and 88, are still alive.

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