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Leona Helmsley Left Billions for Dogs’ Welfare

July 2nd, 2008 Posted in Celebrity Gossip

The late hotelier and real estate magnate Leona Helmsley left between $5 billion and $8 billion to be used for the care and welfare of dogs, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

Helmsley, who died last August, specified in her final “mission statement” that the money be used for canine welfare, although those instructions are “not necessarily legally binding,” the Times quoted William Josephson, a lawyer who is the former head of the Charities Bureau in the New York state attorney general’s office.

But the statement is the only clear expression of Helmsley’s intent, the Times said.

The newspaper’s report was based on two people “who have seen the document” and spoke anonymously.

The Times said Helmsley signed the mission statement in 2003 to establish two goals for the multibillion dollar trust that would dole out her assets following her death.

The first goal was to help poor people, the Times reported. The second goal was to provide for the care and welfare of dogs, the paper reported. In 2004, Helsmley, erased the first goal, the Times said.

Howard J. Rubenstein, a spokesman for the executors of Helmsley’s estate, said the executors would not comment to the Times because they were still working to determine the charitable’ trust’s direction.

It is not the first time that Helmsley has made headlines since her death. It has already been revealed that Helmsley’s will stipulated that $12 million be for her dog.

Helmsley died in 2007 at the age of 87. She had $2.3 billion in liquid assets when she died, the Times said.

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