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Defense lawyer tired of attacks on Smith

October 7, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
A defense lawyer has lashed out at the prosecution on what could be the last day of closing arguments in the Anna Nicole Smith drug conspiracy trial.Prosecutors said Smith was addicted to drugs and that three defendants, Howard K. Stern, Dr. Khristine Erosovich and Dr. Sandeep Kappoor, conspired to keep her that way.

On Thursday morning, Stern's attorney, Steve Sadow, said he's tired of the prosecution repeatedly attacking Smith and characterizing her as an out-of-control drug addict.

Sadow said to look at the medical records. He argued that if Smith was excessively medicated over the years, then it would show in her baby, Dannielynn.

Sadow said there were no signs of dependency or withdrawal. He pointed the jury to other records from Dr. Victor Kovner, Smith's doctor before Dr. Kapoor took over his practice.

Kovner prescribed six controlled substances for anxiety, stress, seizures and pain. She needed them, testified the respected doctor.

The defense attorney said Kapoor continued prescribing the same drugs.

Prosecutors accused Stern of fraud for using false names to obtain meds for Smith. But Sadow noted that hospitals used fake names first. St. Joseph's Medical Center called her Michelle Chase. At Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, she was Jane Brown.

Using fake names was not Howards idea, said Sadow.

Again, jurors viewed photos taken in the time period of the alleged conspiracy. Smith was on a jet ski with friends, smiling and clear-eyed, which Sadow said were signs she was not over-medicated.

When she did need drugs the most, he explained, was for physical pain after her C-section. Then three days later, emotional pain after the sudden death of her son.

Sadow instructed the jury on the legal definitions, saying that drug-seeking behavior due to inadequate control of pain does not constitute as addiction.

Sadow blasted away at the prosecution's case. He asked, "Did you hear from any witness that Anna Nicole took meds to get high, to get euphoria? Not a one." He said that if it was not for euphoria, then it was for pain.

Prosecutors will respond on Friday.

The three defendants have pleaded not guilty to providing the former Playboy model with excessive drugs while knowing she was an addict.

They are not charged in Smith's 2007 overdose death, which was ruled accidental.


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