Thursday, February 22, 2007
Anna Nicole Smith was murdered by her lover Howard K. Stern, lawyers claimed yesterday. The accusation was made during a Florida court hearing to determine where the former Playboy Playmate will be buried. Stern, Anna Nicole's former lover Larry Birkhead and the late model's mother, Virgie Arthur, attended the hearing which descended into chaos when Stern's lawyer Krista Barth accused Birkhead's attorney Debra Opri of claiming her client had killed Anna Nicole. Barth fumed: "Miss Opri just made a statement to my client that he actually killed Miss Smith. I have to protect him."
Judge Larry Seidlin cut dead the accusation, saying the matter of her burial needed to be resolved as Anna Nicole's remains were decomposing faster than expected. After taking a phone call from Joshua Perper, the county's chief medical examiner, Seidlin said: "Time is of the essence. I'm running out of clock." He demanded a clean legal fight from all sides and said he intends to reach a decision by Friday regarding her resting place. The custody battle for the model's body is between Stern - who claims she wanted to be buried in the Bahamas - and Arthur, who wants her daughter to be laid to rest in Texas. Judge Seidlin offered to take over jurisdiction of the ongoing paternity case between Stern and Birkhead, who both claim to be father to Anna Nicole' s five-month-old daughter Dannielynn.
He said it would help with the burial issue if he knew who the father was. His offer was declined. Meanwhile, evidence has emerged that Anna Nicole's will - which left everything to her dead son Daniel - was faxed at 2.18am on 03.02.07, six days before she died. It lists a phone number with the initials RAR - believed to be Ron A. Rale, Stern's lawyer.
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