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Howard K. Stern's civil lawsuits could impact criminal action he currently faces

While Howard K. Stern is awaiting trial in connection with charges that he improperly assisted his former client and girlfriend, Anna Nicole Smith, in obtaining drugs which prosecutors say contributed to her death, he also is juggling other litigation, including a defamation lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court which he filed against two individuals whom Stern alleges were the sources for many of the statements at issue in another defamation suit Stern has filed against reporter Rita Crosby. The Crosby suit is pending in New York.

Although the other law suits filed by Stern for defamation are only civil lawsuits, meaning that they have been brought by a private individual (Stern) against other individuals and the court, at most, has the power to enter a monetary judgment against the defendants as opposed to imposing a prison sentence or other criminal sanctions, the civil lawsuits filed by Stern may impact issues other than just money.

Indeed, in court documents filed in the Los Angeles civil case, Stern has stated under penalty of perjury that "Mark Speer’s accusation to the effect that I drugged Anna is absolutely false. I never facilitated or promoted any type of drug use, prescription or otherwise. Anna was an intelligent, strong-willed individual, who made her own decisions and was not controlled by anyone or anything."

In the complaint filed by Stern, he alleges that "The Chief Medical Examiner investigating Anna’s death determined that the cause of her death was an accident..." Stern also alleges in the suit, which was filed well before he was charged criminally in the Smith affair, "At no times were any criminal charges filed against any person in connection with Anna’s death."

The suit pending in the Los Angeles Superior Court was filed by Stern on September 2, 2008 and a jury trial is scheduled to commence on January, 25, 2010. In the defamation lawsuit, Stern has named as defendants Mark Speer and Jacqueline Elizabeth Hatten whom Stern alleges, according to court documents, knew that reporter Rita Crosby was writing a book and that they were the sources for many of what Stern labels "false and defamatory statements" contained in the book that Crosby wrote. Crosby’s book is entitled, "Blonde Ambition: The Untold Story Behind Anna Nicole Smith’s Death".

In the Los Angeles suit, Stern alleges that Speer is a long time friend of Deborah Opri who is an attorney who represented Larry Birkhead in connection with the paternity suit involving the child whom Stern initially said was his. In court documents, Stern alleges that Opri blames Stern for the "breakdown" in the relationship between her and Birkhead. However, in a written declaration submitted to the court, Speer said that although he had known Opri since the "mid-nineties," that "...she was not a long-time friend, nor did I socialize with her." Speer has also denied other allegations made against him by Stern.

Many of the alleged representations which are at issue in the Stern civil suits are explosive and embarrassing to Stern. It is too early to tell whether these suits will benefit Stern in the way that they were designed to upon being filed. A motion by the defendants to dismiss the case has been denied by the court.

However, many legal analysts will tell you that while a defendant is embroiled in a criminal action, as a defendant, he has to be very careful about what he says or alleges in any other action-criminal or civil. Stern, however, has waged a very aggressive defense in connection with the criminal charges against him, and does not show any signs that he will slow down his efforts to win an acquittal in criminal court and obtain monetary relief in civil court.

Comments

  • Foot Note 5 years ago

    That's not the only suit Howard K. Stern is involved in. He is being sued by Anna Nicole Smiths mother for defamation and conspiracy to defame. Others are also included in that suit. TMZ managing editor Harvey Levin, TMZ.com, Stern's sister Bonnie Stern, journalist Art Harris, Larry Birkhead and three bloggers. The case is in the 280th District Court of Houston Texas. Case number 200824181. Also being added as third party defendants are CBS Studios. Attorney Neil McCabe of the Houston Texas O'Quinn law firm is lead attorney on the case. This case has been utterly astonishing at the lengths most of the defendants are going to hide evidence. This case will have a huge impact upon HK Stern since he is the main defendant.

  • Charlie 5 years ago

    Lloyd, Thank you it is very refreshing to read a fair article about Howard K. Stern and the many lawsuits that he is embroiled in. I hope that you are the start of the trend in the media to not crucify the man and really dig deep and find the REAL story in this. All of the people HKS is suing & has already sued for defamation point to the same people that IMO were instrumental in the criminal charges which have been filed against him. There is a lawsuit in Harris County Texas filed against HKS & others including well-known journalist Art Harris & bloggers that seems to reek of legal corruption in the court and is a story that should be told by a non-bias journalist, I hope you will consider covering this and bringing it to the main-stream media.

  • Defamation 5 years ago

    Yes, he and the baby daddy Larry Birkhead are being sued by Anna Nicole Smith's mother, Virgie Arthur. They conspired to defame her because she was worried about the welfare of her granddaughter and wanted to oversee her care or possibly obtain custody since the father is in bed with the one who is most likely responsible for Anna Nicole and Daniels deaths. Heck, by the time this is over we may find out just how much and how many people wanted Anna Nicole and Daniel dead.

  • Get the Attorney General 5 years ago

    The only story here is what other law firm do you know spends over one million dollars on a pro bono case, for an estranged mother that has been judged to be a limited public figure in the Texas Federal Court.
    Yes the story lies with McCabe, O'Quinn and a fishing expedition into the potential Marshall estate that may go to Anna's child.

    Charlie, corruption is the correct word for that Judge that has been involved with the players in Texas, but still refuses to Recuse herself! The same Judge that emailed the court that got handed this case and ASKED FOR IT PERSONALLY!
    Where is the MAIN STREAM MEDIA?
    Where is the TEXAS ETHICS BOARD?

  • Defamation 5 years ago

    What these people fail to understand is that;
    1. They don't have all the facts of the case or Mrs Arthur's real relationship with her late daughter.
    2. They fail to recognize that all that has been done, has been done in many a court before this one and is entirely legal and proper.

  • Not Legal At ALL! 5 years ago

    Funny comments "Defamation"
    You are boarding on that yourself. Nobody is responsible for what a 20 year old and a adult almost 40 put in their body.
    You do not have the facts it looks like, as even the estranged mom who has started over 6 court cases trying to get something from someone admitted on television she had not seen her daughter or grandson for over 10 years. There are very good reasons that 20 year old did not contact his estranged grandmother.
    There is nothing legal and proper in this HARRIS COUNTY COURT CASE # 2008-24181
    hcdistrictclerk com /Common /Default .aspx
    YOU appear to have not mentioned one word refuting the part that over $1,000,000 has been spent trying to tear this innocent man to shreds, along with anyone who is in support of the fact that there were many involved with TX trying to conspire to harm and defame him with lies and innuendos. This has been proven by the bribing of the nannies in the Bahamas by Rita Cosby, TX's friend + others like Opri, Speer

  • E.B 5 years ago

    Rita Cosby read gossip and tabloids and wrote a book based upon gossip. She didn't verify the information and sources. She also relied on people whom had never been Anna Nicole's nor Howard's friends. Cosby even tried to bribe Anna's maids with $15,000 for fake affidavit.Virgie Arthur confessed that she physically abused her daughter when she was a child, read: Stern v. Cosby. Nobody defamed Virgie, she defamed herself. She wants to control child's money and possible $88 mil. from Marshall case. Virgie is all about money as usual. She cannot hide the truth and re-write her biography.

  • reality 5 years ago

    Anytime there are 6 court cases in 4 states, in which all parties are involved someway, you begin to suspect that there's something going on that should be investigated by some objective person. I hope that you are that person.

  • Dawnn Behrens 5 years ago

    Howard said "Anna was an intelligent, strong-willed individual, who made her own decisions and was not controlled by anyone or anything."

    I would have to say... I believe him.

  • sassie 5 years ago

    I will always stand behind Howard,he has done any thing wrong,Virgie was never in Anna's life,every one has seen in the news,and read on all she has done to her Anna,is Virgie is after the money,I wish that she will never get a penny.This should all be put behind,and throwed out of court,so these dead people can be put at rest.

  • Noodlemonkey 5 years ago

    Whether or not Stern is criminally responsible for Anna's death, he most definitely is responsible for exploiting her like it was his job. He's a vile human being who exploited Anna, her daughter and the court sytem--all to make a profit. It's disgusting!

  • Mrs Marple 5 years ago

    I thought the Stern/Speers case was dropped. I love the way people that support Stern always try to bring Anna's mother into the case saying that they were estranged, etc. But the truth of the matter look how close Micheal Jackson was to his family immediately before his death. Drug Addicts tend to avoid the people that really love them because the one's that really love them are going to try and talk to them about their drug addiction problem. And Howard K Stern admitted that he hid the drugs from Anna. When Anna died the drugs were in the room across the living area and in another room. That is except the Lorazepam that is missing altogether. California is finally doing something about the illegally obtained legal drugs that are killing so many talented people. Every deadly drug that was in Anna's system had Howard K Stern's name on the prescription bottles. Does that tell you something in itself?

  • Stern supporter 4 years ago

    while a defendant is embroiled in a criminal action, as a defendant, he has to be very careful about what he says or alleges in any other action-criminal or civil. Stern, however, has waged a very aggressive defense in connection with the criminal charges against him, and does not show any signs that he will slow down his efforts to win an acquittal in criminal

    Since you wrote this article I see Stern ad settle the lawsuit with Rita Crosby.Also the "bloggers"case will be ending .That was a joke made by J O'Quinn in revanch of the lawsuit Stern ad made in Florida, against Stern treathing him of "murder'.Also is a lawsuit against SC "ole boys" Thompson and Shelly .Also is imply in this lawsuit Suzann Brown .It will be prouve that she was relate to O 'Quinn /VA gang.SB and SC stole Anna Nicole Smith's house when she died.
    At this date Stern never lost a lawsuit .He will succed in Ca also .Brown going to be next governor of California????
    Maybe......but widouth the support of O'Quinn

  • Stern supporter 4 years ago

    I hope you will diggg deep before making some concern aginst Stern.Stern ad win all the lawsuit at this time.Criminal charges in CA?
    He will succed also.Brown for governor???????
    maybe but not with the help of J O'Quinn,since this man died at the end of october.

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