Reclusive Heiress' Estate Mess Gets Messier

Huguette Clark's attorney, accountant suspended from administering estate

By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 24, 2011 1:07 PM CST

(Newser) – Reclusive heiress Huguette Clark's life was shrouded in mystery—and now, more intrigue. A New York City judge yesterday suspended her lawyer and accountant from administering her $400 million estate—taking away the $8 million payday they'd each receive as executors. Though both deny wrongdoing, the surrogate court judge pointed to claims made by the New York public administrator's office earlier in the week: It found evidence that the pair engaged in tax fraud that led to $90 million in unpaid federal gift taxes and penalties. Attorney Wallace Bock and CPA Irving H. Kamsler should be removed "by reason of their dishonesty, improvidence, waste, and want of understanding," read the office's court filing, as reported by the Los Angeles Times.

Among the allegations made by the public administrator—who was court-appointed to serve as a third executor—as reported by MSNBC: That Bock and Kamsler charged Clark for filing tax returns they never filed; didn't file federal gift tax returns between 1997 and 2003, and paid only $7.5 million of the $41.5 million in taxes due on the gifts made during that period; and never told Clark about the unpaid taxes, or the penalties and interest that were accruing (her tax bill was jumping $9,000 per day) ... among other lies made to the IRS and the public administrator. Kamsler (who MSNBC notes is a registered sex offender) resigned as executor on Wednesday.

This Aug. 11, 1930 file photo shows Mrs. Huguette Clark Gower, daughter of the late Sen. William A. Clark of Montana.
This Aug. 11, 1930 file photo shows Mrs. Huguette Clark Gower, daughter of the late Sen. William A. Clark of Montana.   (AP Photo, File)
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