Patty Hearst seeks family trust data

April 27, 2005 at 3:37 PM
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LOS ANGELES, April 27 (UPI) -- Heiress Patricia Hearst has filed a legal motion in Los Angeles to unseal the will of media mogul William Randolph Hearst, Daily Variety said Wednesday.

The paper said the Hearst board of trustees is opposing the request to open the records of the Hearst Corp. -- valued at an estimated $18 billion. William Randolph Heart's will and probate file have been sealed for nearly three decades.

The board, made up of five family members and eight company executives, controls the company. Patricia Hearst told Variety some family members believe they are not being sufficiently informed about the trust.

"I call it the Hearst family secret, not the Hearst Family Trust," she said.

The newspaper said former Hearst chief Frank Bennack Jr., who retired in 2002, was more forthcoming with information for family members than his predecessors had been, and his successor, Victor Ganzi, is said to be less open about such matters than Bennack was.

Patricia Hearst's motion follows the filing of a motion last week by her cousin, William Randolph Hearst II, asking whether he would be disinherited if he sought more access to company information.

Variety said a clause in the Hearst will threatens heirs with disinheritance for challenging the document.

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