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Maltese Trouble: Leona Helmsley Says “Screw You” From Beyond The Grave

by | 29th, August 2007

helmsley.jpgAND so she was in life, and so she was in death.

Leona Helmsley, the billionaire “Queen of Mean” who died last week, issued one last “screw you” from beyond the grave: she left $12 million to her dog and nothing to two of her grandchildren.

Helsmley, an American hotel and real estate tycoon, was famously jailed for 19 months at the tail end of the 1980s for tax evasion. She gained notoriety for reportedly telling a housekeeper “only the little people pay taxes.”

Her estate has been valued at between $4 billion and $8 billion, the bulk of which she left to her charitable trust.

Family members, including her eight-year-old Maltese dog called Trouble, got a measly $50 million total.

The biggest payout went to Helmsley’s brother Alvin Rosenthal who received $15 million. Next was Trouble, with $12 million. A further $10 million went to grandchildren Walter and David Panziner.

Helmsley’s other grandchildren Craig and Meegan Panziner got nothing–“for reasons which are known to them,” Helsmley wrote in her will–as did her 12 great grandchildren.

With $12 million, you’d think millionaire Maltese Trouble would be everyone’s favorite pet. But Helmsley’s brother Alvin, who has been instructed to take care of Trouble, could be in for a rough ride.

Trouble is “infamous for having luxurious taste” and a nasty temper, according to the New York Post.

The dog will only eat gourmet foods and refuses to dine from a bowl. A succession of Helmsley employees have been given the dubious honor of hand-feeding Trouble, who also has a penchant for biting people. One employee filed a lawsuit against Helmsley claiming nerve damage from numerous bites. And after Trouble bit a diner in a Manhattan restaurant, rather than apologizing  Helmsley reportedly said: “I guess Trouble doesn’t like you.”

Helmsley also ordered that Trouble be buried alongside her and her husband Harry, who died in 1997, in the family’s 1,300-square-foot mausoleum.

The rich are definitely not like you and me.



Posted: 29th, August 2007 | In: Reviews Comments (5) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink