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Court Rules Anna Nicole Smith Will Get None of $300 Million Oil Fortune

A federal appeals court has ruled that the elderly Texas billionaire who married Anna Nicole Smith in the last year of his life never intended to leave her any portion of his vast fortune.

Smith had claimed her billionaire husband promised her more than $300 million, even though there was no written documentation.

In his last will, J. Howard Marshall said he wanted to leave nearly all of his $1.6 billion estate to his son E. Pierce Marshall and nothing to Smith.

The court ruled that a verdict rendered in 2001, which favored Marshall's son, should be upheld and that any later rulings that promised money to Smith should be ignored.

Pierce's widow and two sons said they hoped the legal battle was over: "Our only wish would be that Pierce were here to see his vindication," they said in a statement.

But Kent Richland, a lawyer for Smith's estate vowed to appeal the latest ruling in the 15-year legal battle.

Anna Nicole Smith married J. Howard Marshall when he was 89 and she was 26.

The decision is bad news for Smith's ex-boyfriend, Larry Birkhead, who is raising their 3-year-old daughter Dannielynn. The child, named Smith's heir after she died of a drug overdose at 39, would have received a portion of the fortune.

March 22, 2010 |

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