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US court: Anna Nicole Smith manager can be retried 

JANUARY 06: Anna Nicole Smith's former compainion and manager Howard K. Stern (C) leaves court after being aquitted of all charges on January 6,   2011 in Los Angeles,   California. Stern had been charged with obtaining controlled substances by fraud and using false names stemming from the death of Anna Nicole Smith. (Photo by Toby Canham/Getty Images)
ANTHONY McCARTNEY, AP Entertainment Writer

Anna Nicole Smith’s manager can be retried on conspiracy charges related to obtaining prescription drugs for use by the model, the California Supreme Court ruled Monday.

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The decision returns the case to a criminal judge in Los Angeles, but it does not guarantee that Howard K. Stern will be retried.

The ruling states that Stern could face a retrial on two conspiracy charges if a judge grants a request for anew trial and does not find another legal basis to dismiss the case.

Stern was previously acquitted of most of the 11 counts he faced related to the obtaining of drugs for Smith, who died in Florida in 2007.

A jury convicted Stern and Smith’s psychiatrist Dr. Khristine Eroshevich of two counts each of conspiring with to obtain prescriptions under a false name in 2010.

 Oct. 2,   2000 file photo model Anna Nicole Smith smiles as she walks to the courthouse with her attorney Howard Stern in Houston. The California Supreme Court ruled on Monday Nov. 3,   2014,   that Stern may be retried on two counts of conspiracy related to obtaining prescriptions for Smith,   but that decision will be made by a Los Angeles criminal court judge. Smith died Feb. 8,   2007 of an accidental drug overdose (AP Photo/Brett Cooomer,   File)


Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Robert Perry later dismissed the case, saying it was not unusual in the celebrity world for fake names to be used to protect privacy.

An appeals court then ordered the convictions reinstated and ruled that Stern could not be retried due to double jeopardy — a legal principle that prevents people from being tried twice for the same crime.

Stern’s attorney Steve Sadow was not immediately available for comment. The Los Angeles County district attorney’s office had no immediate comment on the latest ruling.

The case against Stern and Eroshevich involved prescriptions given to Smith in the months before she died of an accidental drug overdose. The defendants were not charged with causing her death.

Eroshevich also was convicted of one count of obtaining Vicodin under a false name.

Perry dismissed the conspiracy counts and reduced the remaining conviction against Eroshevich to a misdemeanor with a sentence of one year of probation and a $100 fine. Her lawyer has said she has fulfilled those terms.

Monday’s ruling did not impact Eroshevich’s case.

A co-defendant, Dr. Sandeep Kapoor, who was Smith’s physician, has been acquitted of all charges.



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