More paperwork filed in James Brown estate battle

By: Gene Petriello Email
By: Gene Petriello Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock, December 11, 2007

AIKEN CTY, S.C. -- More documents have been filed and more legal battles are set to come in the James Brown estate battle. Another hundred pages of documents were filed today. There's a challenge to Tomi Rae Brown's claim to marriage, and a big question looms: is James Brown II going to get any part of the estate?

News 12 talked with attorney Scott Connell, who is not involved in the case. He summed it up by saying, "We're in the middle of this huge mess and it's probably going to take a while to sort this whole thing out."

One big controversy may have hit a road block: Tomi Rae Brown hoping to be named the fourth wife and widow of James Brown once and for all. The problem is the Georgia Attorney General asking the court to refuse a petition for a summary judgment. Connell explains: "Because we're not finished with the discovery process. We don't know what all the facts are yet. We can't make a decision on the merits of the case."

So, what does all this mean for Tomi Rae?

"If the judge were to side with the AG's office, then it would mean this process will be a lot more prolonged for Tomi Rae. If he agreed with Tomi Rae, perhaps not," says Scott.

And that's not the only controversy. These papers - from the Georgia Attorney General looking at James Brown the Second's claim to the estate.

"What people should take away from that is the AG is not willing to concede he should take part of the estate," says Connell.

Issue number three: more documents filed showing the conflict of interest if the Special Administrators -- assigned by the Judge -- are in control of both the estate and the trust. The AG's want to know why the administrators did not tell the court one of the fees to pay is to themselves.

"Are you doing this because it's the best thing for the estate or are you asking for these funds because it's the best thing for yourself? That is something the AG Office is asking the court to decide," says Connell.

So, on we go...

"The judge in this case has slings and arrows facing him in every different direction," says Connell.

There is still no date set for any future hearings in this on-going battle.


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