$450m for ex-Playmate

Court gives former model share in ex-husband's fortune
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The Independent US

A federal bankruptcy judge has awarded former Playboy Playmate of the Year Anna Nicole Smith $449.7 million in her claim to the estate of her late billionaire husband, Texas oilman J. Howard Marshall. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Samuel Bufford ruled Wednesday that Marshall's youngest son, E. Pierce Marshall, had deprived Smith "of her expectancy of an inheritance." Her attorney, Philip Boesch Jr., said Smith was "very pleased" and believes the ruling "puts the matter to rest." Marshall called the ruling a "miscarriage of justice" and said he would appeal. Bufford's decision came just a day before jury selection was scheduled to begin in probate court in Houston, in a dispute over the validity of Marshall's will, which left all of the oilman's estate to his youngest son. That case pits both Smith and Marshall's disinherited elder son, J. Howard Marshall III, against E. Pierce Marshall. Smith testified last year that E. Pierce Marshall defrauded her of between $556 million and $820 million she was entitl

A federal bankruptcy judge has awarded former Playboy Playmate of the Year Anna Nicole Smith $449.7 million in her claim to the estate of her late billionaire husband, Texas oilman J. Howard Marshall. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Samuel Bufford ruled Wednesday that Marshall's youngest son, E. Pierce Marshall, had deprived Smith "of her expectancy of an inheritance." Her attorney, Philip Boesch Jr., said Smith was "very pleased" and believes the ruling "puts the matter to rest." Marshall called the ruling a "miscarriage of justice" and said he would appeal. Bufford's decision came just a day before jury selection was scheduled to begin in probate court in Houston, in a dispute over the validity of Marshall's will, which left all of the oilman's estate to his youngest son. That case pits both Smith and Marshall's disinherited elder son, J. Howard Marshall III, against E. Pierce Marshall. Smith testified last year that E. Pierce Marshall defrauded her of between $556 million and $820 million she was entitled to as her share of her late husband's estate. The former model for Playboy, Guess jeans and other magazines and advertisements, was working as a stripper at a topless bar in Houston when she met Marshall. She was 26 and he was 89 when they were married in 1994. He died in 1995 at age 90, leaving behind a fortune estimated at as much as dlrs 1.6 billion. Smith, who uses her married name of Vickie Lynn Marshall in court documents, claims her husband intended she would receive half of his estate. "He wanted to make me happy," she testified last year. "My wish was his command." But when he died, Marshall's will bequeathed everything to the younger of his two sons. Bufford ruled that Marshall promised Smith half his fortune if she would marry him. Smith's expected inheritance was based on her "widow's election," or right to elect against her husband's will, "which made no provision for her," Bufford said.

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