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Pampered pooch draws death threats

NEW YORK, Dec. 3 (UPI) -- The Maltese pup that inherited $12 million from Leona Helmsley has been forced to flee Helmsley's Connecticut estate after receiving dozens of death threats.

The petite pooch called Trouble was flown under an assumed name to a Helmsley property in Florida several months ago, The New York Post reported Monday.

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"We've had problems keeping her identity confidential, and we had to change her name even to take her on the aircraft," said John Codey, the Helmsley executive in charge of Trouble's $12 million trust fund.

Trouble has a rotating security team, which accompanied her to Florida.

The dog's penchant for biting people has earned her a lot of enemies over the years but Codey says he is astonished by the animosity towards the pooch.

At a yearly cost estimated at more than $300,000, Trouble lives better than most Americans with meals prepared by chefs, expert medical care and frequent grooming.

Helmsley's will called for Trouble to be cared for by her brother but he declined to take the pooch saddling Helmsley employees with the job.

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