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Prosecutor calls for Woerth’s acquittal in Bettencourt case

Bordeaux (AFP) – A French prosecutor on Friday called for former budget minister Eric Woerth to be acquitted of stolen property charges in a trial sparked by the alleged exploitation of France’s richest woman Liliane Bettencourt. “There are no accusations and no evidence sufficient to prove his guilt,” deputy prosecutor Gerard Aldige said, referring to Keep Reading…

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Corrupt Ohio probate judges discussed

Janet Phelan reports on corrupt judges in Cuyahoga County, Ohio. From KBOO Community Radio: I am writing you with a number of further concerns about Cuyahoga County Magistrate David M. Mills. What I have uncovered in the intervening time between our first email exchange has led me to question his fitness for his position. David Keep Reading…

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Judge affirms $3.2M verdict for Gill trustee (GA)

COLUMBUS, Ga. (CN) – The custodian of a trust established by fugitive real estate mogul John Gill is entitled to a $3.2 million jury award for damages stemming from the conversion of the trust’s funds, a federal judge ruled. U.S, District Judge Clay Land confirmed the award in a case that pitted Daniel Van Gasken, Keep Reading…

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Tom Benson seeks expedited appeal in fight over Texas trust’s control (TX/LA)

Tom Benson wants to expedite his appeal of a Texas judge’s ruling that has ousted the owner of the New Orleans Saints and Pelicans as steward of a trust that had been set up to benefit his now-estranged daughter. In paperwork filed in Texas’ 4th Court of Appeals, Benson’s lawyers said the two men appointed Keep Reading…

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Aunt Jemima heirs’ $3 billion lawsuit against Pepsi, Quaker Oats tossed by judge

Pepsi and Quaker Oats have just escaped a potentially sticky legal situation. The two companies have been granted a dismissal in a lawsuit brought against them by two men claiming to be the great-grandsons of Anna Short Harrington, who portrayed syrup and pancake figurehead Aunt Jemima. Dannez W. Hunter and Larnell Evans, Jr. filed suit Keep Reading…

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Ernie Banks’ caretaker ordered to give full accounting of his assets (IL)

In his 19 seasons playing baseball on the North Side, Chicago Cubs great Ernie Banks never earned a salary higher than $75,000, a pittance compared to the multimillion-dollar contracts thrown at ballplayers today. But Banks’ trademark smile and unwavering optimism made him a fan favorite and marketer’s dream. For years after Banks’ retirement in 1971, Keep Reading…

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Prospect Park Residence owner to pay $750,000 in death of ‘kung-fu judge’ (NY)

Hi-yah! The embattled owner of a Park Slope assisted-living facility will pay $750,000 to the estate of a beloved Brooklyn judge, known for holding a black belt in karate, thanks to a settlement in a wrongful death lawsuit. The suit claimed that Prospect Park Residence owner Haysha Deitsch was running a sham facility staffed by Keep Reading…

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Flashback perspective on Bexar County Probate Judge Tom Rickhoff

As Bexar County Probate Judge Tom Rickhoff has been a major player in the Benson estate battle, this 2009 “profile in probate law”  offers some interesting insight. From San Antonio Business Journal: Over Tom Rickhoff’s career, he fought in the battlefields of Vietnam, spent several years prosecuting the Mafia in New Orleans, and sat on Keep Reading…

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Robin Williams’ family prepare to fight for his fortune

The actor’s widow Susan Schneider claims in legal papers that his children from two previous marriages “invaded” her home and took antique Japanese figurines and other valuables. A counter lawsuit filed by Zak Williams, 31, step-brother Cody, 23, and step-sister Zelda, 25, claims their father left them the possessions but Ms Schneider barred them from Keep Reading…

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Rickhoff’s probate mantra: Don’t trust anyone over 85 (TX)

Four years ago, in an estate hearing involving an 88-year-old World War II veteran, Probate Court Judge Tom Rickhoff made a dubious proclamation. “The statistic,” Rickhoff said, “is that everybody in America who is 85 has some dementia.” That opinion didn’t bode well for Jack Hood, the veteran who was fighting to maintain guardianship of Keep Reading…

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Former Hancock Co. probate judge sentenced (GA)

A former Hancock County probate judge was sentenced Thursday to almost two years in prison for two counts of theft of federal funds from the county. Marva Rice was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison and will pay restitution of almost $70,000 to the county. Rice entered a plea guilty in October of 2014. Keep Reading…

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Secret daughter in will fight (AU)

The secret daughter of billionaire mining heir Michael Wright has launched an extraordinary contest against his will, claiming she should be provided with a $2.5 million house, a $250,000 diamond-studded bass guitar and a $1.2 million crystal-encrusted grand piano – as well as every other expense she incurs until age 96. Student Olivia Mead, 19, Keep Reading…

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Liberia: Supreme Court gets tougher on Hage case – asks judge to recuse himself

The Supreme Court of Liberia has directed the Monthly and Probate Court presiding Judge, J. Vinton Holder, to recuse himself from the case ‘Oumou Sirleaf Hage et al Vs. Bassam Jahawary, Executor of the Testate Estate of the late Milad R. Hage for failing to give first priority to the handling of the case as Keep Reading…

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Banks had just $16,000 when he died, caregiver’s lawyer says (IL)

Ernie Banks had assets of just $16,000 when he died last month, according to a lawyer for the caregiver at the center of the bitter dispute over the Cubs’ legend’s will. But Banks’ widow “just wants to know what happened” to “Mr. Cub’s” wealth, her lawyer said. During a brief but heated court appearance Tuesday Keep Reading…

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George Cushingberry Jr.’s law license suspended (MI)

DETROIT – Detroit City Councilman Pro Tem George Cushingberry Jr.’s law license has been suspended for one year. Cushingberry’s law license likely is gone for good. The one-year suspension is a penalty for not showing up to hearings he was supposed to attend to whether he could keep the license in the first place. The Keep Reading…

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