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Casey Anthony files for bankruptcy in Florida
Question of the Day
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Casey Anthony filed for bankruptcy in Florida on Friday, claiming about $1,100 in assets and $792,000 in liabilities.
Court records show that Miss Anthony, who was acquitted of killing her 2-year-old daughter, Caylee, in 2011, sought Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection in federal court in Tampa.
Her listed debts include $500,000 for attorney fees and costs for her criminal defense lawyer during the trial, Jose Baez; $145,660 for the Orange County sheriff's office for a judgment covering investigative fees and costs related to the case; $68,540 for the Internal Revenue Service for taxes, interest and penalties; and $61,505 for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for court costs.
The filling also states that she is a defendant in several civil suits, including one brought in Orange County Circuit Court by Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez for defamation.
Ms. Fernandez-Gonzalez claims her reputation was damaged by Miss Anthony's telling detectives that a baby sitter by the same name kidnapped Caylee. The detectives were investigating the 2008 disappearance of the girl, who later was found dead. Miss Anthony's attorney said details offered by Miss Anthony did not match Ms. Fernandez-Gonzalez and clearly showed Miss Anthony wasn't talking about her.
Court papers list Miss Anthony as unemployed, with no recent income.
An attorney for Miss Anthony, David Schrader, did not immediately respond to messages from The Associated Press.
Miss Anthony lists about 80 creditors in the 60-page court filing. The claims largely cover fees for legal, medical, psychiatric and forensics consulting or services. But one claim covers a debt for scuba-diving services.
According to the courts, the aim of seeking Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection is to be discharged of most existing debts — essentially to obtain a fresh financial start. A trustee may have the right to take possession of and sell nonexempt property and use the sale proceeds to pay creditors, but Miss Anthony lists little in the way of assets. A debtor may still be held responsible for some obligations, such as taxes and student loans.
The filing came on the same day that a Florida appellate court set aside two of the four convictions she faced for lying to detectives during the investigation into her missing daughter.
Though Miss Anthony was acquitted of killing Caylee, jurors convicted her of four counts of lying to detectives, and her attorneys appealed those convictions. Anthony was sentenced to time served for the misdemeanors.
She was sentenced to a year of probation after her release from jail for an unrelated case. For her protection, her whereabouts have been kept secret since she was released from state supervision last year.
By Donald Lambro
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