Heiress Dog Flees After Threats
Leona Helmsley’s $12 million dog is flown to Florida after being the target of kidnapping threats.
Posted: December 6, 2007, 5 a.m. EST
When the late Leona Helmsley left more than $12 million to her Maltese, Trouble, she couldn’t have known what, well, trouble it would be for the dog.
But now the heiress dog has been moved to a Helmsley property in Florida after being targeted by threats in Connecticut.
“We received any number of threats to kidnap the dog, so that was a major problem for us after Leona passed away,” said John Codey, the Helmsley executive in charge of the pooch’s trust fund, to CBS’s “The Early Show.”
Codey said the 4-pound dog has a rotating security team and required an alias – Bauble –for safety reasons when she was flown from Connecticut two months ago by private jet.
The cost of Trouble’s upkeep – including her security detail, medical care, grooming, and chef-prepared meals – is well over $300,000 a year, Codey said. He added that whatever money Trouble doesn’t spend in her lifetime will go into Helmsley’s charitable fund, which eventually could top $6 billion.
Helmsley’s will called for Trouble to be taken in by Helmsley’s brother, Alvin Rosenthal. But Rosenthal refused to take the dog, leaving Trouble to be cared for by Helmsley employees, first at Helmsley’s 28-room Dunnellen Hall estate in Connecticut, and then in Florida.
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