Anna Nicole Smith's Doctors, Boyfriend Must Stand Trial
Associated Press photo
Anna Nicole Smith died of drug overdose in 2007.
LOS ANGELES TIMES
Published: Friday, October 30, 2009 at 8:03 p.m.
Last Modified: Friday, October 30, 2009 at 8:03 p.m.
LOS ANGELES | A judge Friday ordered two of Anna Nicole Smith's physicians and her one-time boyfriend to stand trial on charges of conspiring to illegally furnish the 39-year-old with prescription medications.
.Superior Court Judge Robert J. Perry said the legal standard for the defendant to face trial was "very minimal."
"I do find the people have met the task of convincing this court there is strong suspicion that the defendants committed the act. ... I do find the proof is sufficient to bind them over for trial," Perry said in a downtown Los Angeles courtroom.
Arraignment has been set for Dec. 11 and will be overseen by another judge.
During court proceedings that began Oct. 13, it was revealed that Smith spent the last days of her life drifting in and out of consciousness under the pale blue comforter of a king-sized hotel bed, too weak to walk, sit up or drink from anything other than a baby bottle.
The supermodel died in 2007 of an overdose of a sedative and other drugs at a hospital in Hollywood, Fla., near the Seminole Hard Rock Casino, where she had been staying. A medical examiner ruled her death an accident.
But a multi-agency task force spent two years investigating how she obtained opiates, sedatives and other drugs - 44 different medications - before her death.
Prosecutors ultimately charged two Los Angeles doctors who wrote her prescriptions, Khristine Eroshevich and Sandeep Kapoor, and her long-time companion andlawyer, Howard K. Stern, with offenses that include prescribing controlled substances to an addict and obtaining prescriptions under a false name. All three have pleaded not guilty.
During testimony this month, Special Agent Danny Santiago of the California Bureau of Narcotics Enforcement summarized the investigation.
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