Earlier this month, a revealing letter that Tupac Shakur wrote Madonna from prison in 1995 went public when an auction house announced its forthcoming sale. The news was not just a surprise to Internet users—many of whom did not realize that Madonna dated the late rapper—but to Madonna herself who, according to a new report, thought she still had the handwritten letter in her possession.
“I have never sold, gifted, transferred or otherwise disposed of the Shakur letter,” Madonna claimed in the restraining-order request she filed in New York Supreme Court on Tuesday against the auction house Gotta Have It Collectibles, temporarily halting the sale, per Reuters.
In the letter, written by Shakur while in prison for sexual assault, the rapper confessed that he ended their relationship because of her race.
“For you to be seen with a black man wouldn’t in any way jeopardize your career—if anything it would make you seem that much more open and exciting,” the rapper wrote. “But for me, at least in my previous perception, I felt due to my ‘image,’ I would be letting down half of the people who made me what I thought I was. I never meant to hurt you.”
Madonna filed the legal paperwork on Tuesday, a day before the letter was set to go to auction. In the court filings, the singer-songwriter claimed that she only realized the letter was gone after reading press reports of the forthcoming sale, which was expected to fetch up to $100,000.
Madonna maintained that the letter as well as nearly 20 other personal items which were slated to go up for auction—including a pair of underwear, a corset, photos of Madonna with a male stripper at a bachelorette party, a checkbook, and a corset—were taken from her illegally.
Madonna claimed that the person at fault is Darlene Lutz, who consigned the items to auction and whom Madonna described as a former friend and art consultant. According to Madonna, Lutz “betrayed my trust in an outrageous effort to obtain my possessions without my knowledge or consent.”
Since the court filing, a representative for the auction house confirmed that Madonna halted the sale of the letter and other items. In a statement to TMZ, the spokesperson said, “We believe that [Madonna’s] intent is nothing more than to besmirch the good reputations of the auction house and Ms. Lutz. Madonna’s allegations will be vigorously challenged and refuted in a court of law in due course.”
Another personal letter in the lot—written by Madonna herself in the 90s—went public earlier this week. In it, Madonna complained about not being as successful in music as Whitney Houston and in film as Sharon Stone.
“It’s so unequivocally frustrating to read that Whitney Houston has the music career I wish I had and Sharon Stone had the film career I’ll never have,” Madonna wrote. “Not because I want to be these women because I’d rather die but they’re so horribly mediocre and they’re always being held up as paragons of virtue and some sort of measuring stick to humiliate me.”
Since the letter was made public, Stone personally responded in an Instagram showing the two together on a red carpet.
“I have wished to be a rock star in some private moments. . .have felt as mediocre as you described,” Stone wrote in the caption. “We know, as only those who have survived so long that owning our own mediocrity is the only way to own our own strengths; to become all that we both have become. . .I love and adore you; won’t be pitted against you by any invasion of our personal journeys.”