Howard K. Stern, Anna Nicole Smith
Howard K. Stern, the lawyer and companion of Anna Nicole Smith, was charged Wednesday with five felony counts in relation to the late reality star's drug use and February 2007 death.
Stern has pleaded not guilty to all five charges, which include four counts of obtaining fraudulent prescriptions and one count of prescribing, administering or dispensing controlled substances to an addict.
The tragic life and death of Anna Nicole Smith
The charges follow a March 2009 charge against Stern, Dr. Khristine Eroshevich and Dr. Sandeep Kapoor. They were accused of conspiring to furnish drugs to the one-time Playboy playmate. Both Eroshevich and Kapoor have already been charged with the felonies brought against Stern Wednesday. All three parties have pleaded not guilty to the charges.
"I think it shows that the prosecution recognizes that its case is weak and has added additional charges against Mr. Stern in the hopes that something will stick, but it doesn't strengthen their case at all," Stern's attorney, Steven Sadow, told TVGuide.com of the new charges brought against his client.
The charges also come the day after newly unsealed affidavits revealed that Smith might have had sexual contact with both doctors and that a Los Angeles pharmacist refused to fill a prescription for her five months before her 2007 death. The affidavits stem from the state of California's investigation on the possible role Stern, Eroshevich and Kapoor played in her drug use and subsequent death from prescription medication overdose.
Read more about the rejected prescription and the accusations against Smith's doctors
"I'm confident that when either a judge or a jury hears this case finally, they will decide that Howard is not guilty," Sadow said.