Agnelli daughter loses estate contest

Gianni Agnelli daughter loses inheritance suit
Associated Press
March 17, 2010
Netscape Internet Service
MILAN (AP) – The daughter of late former Fiat chairman Gianni Agnelli lost a lawsuit Wednesday that she filed against three of her father’s trusted advisers.

According to a copy of the decision, a judge in Turin threw out the suit by Margherita Agnelli de Pahlen, who sought to get a fuller accounting of her father’s estate, effectively challenging a 2004 inheritance agreement. The judge ordered de Pahlen to pay court costs of euro32,000 ($43,900).

The court was expected to issue its reasons for the decision in the coming days.

The lawsuit, filed in 2007, also named Agnelli de Pahlen’s mother, and it opened a bitter rift in the Agnelli dynasty. Marella Caracciolo, Gianni Agnelli’s widow, rebuked her daughter for launching a lawsuit to demand a review of her late husband’s private estate, and Agnelli de Pahlen’s eldest son, John Elkann, expressed his sadness at the move.

“The court’s verdict brings to an end an episode that has been sad and painful for us all,” Caracciolo said in a statement. “Now I hope with all my heart that peace and affection will return and that we can look calmly to the future for the good of all my family.”

Lawyers for the woman say she sought a full accounting after being stonewalled on the provenance of 100 million euros ($146 million) that showed up unexplained in her bank account. The suit targeted three executors of the auto tycoon’s will.