Thursday, August 30, 2007

Lucky dog inherits $12m fortune

New York hotelier and real estate billionaire Leona Helmsley has left $12m (£5.97m) to her pet dog, Trouble.

The pampered pooch received the largest bequest from Mrs Helmsley's will.

The will also says that when Trouble dies, she is to be buried alongside Mrs Helmsley, who died last week, and her late husband in their mausoleum.

But some human members of Mrs Helmsley's family fared less well, with two of her four grandchildren cut out of the will entirely.

Mrs Helmsley, who died last week, was dubbed the "Queen of Mean" by the US media, and was known for her tough approach to business.

She and her late husband, Harry, built a company which managed some of New York's most prestigious addresses, including the Empire State Building, as well as hotels across the country.

The money for Trouble's upkeep was left in the hands of her brother, Alvin Rosenthal, who himself inherited $10m.

Two grandchildren, David and Walter Panzirer, were left $5m each on condition that they visit their father's grave at least once a year.

Their father, Mrs Helmsley's son Jay Panzirer, died in 1982.

But grandchildren Craig and Meegan Panzirer received nothing - "for reasons which are known to them", according to Mrs Helmsley's will.

Mrs Helmsley left her chauffeur $100,000.

She also set aside $3m for the upkeep of her and her husband's final resting place.

Proceeds from the sale of Mrs Helmsley's residences and belongings will go to a charitable trust.

Story from BBC NEWS:

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