Trials & Litigation
Astor’s Will Codicil Was Forged, Testifies Handwriting Expert
Posted Aug 5, 2009 4:55 PM CST
By Martha Neil
A 2004 codicil to Brooke Astor's will was forged, a handwriting expert testified today in the 15th week of a high-profile Manhattan criminal trial against the deceased New York society matron's son and an estate attorney.
Four inconsistencies left him in "absolutely no doubt," said forensic document examiner Gus Lesnevich, that the 102-year-old Astor's purported signature on the codicil was not her own, reports the City Room blog of the New York Times.
Only Astor's estate attorney, Francis Morrissey Jr., is accused of forging her signature. However, both he and Astor's only son, Anthony Marshall, are accused in the New York state-court case of taking advantage of her diminished mental state to fool her into changing her will in a manner that sent millions of dollars their way.
New York Times: "Defense in Astor Case Argues That She Was Simply Absent-Minded"