Boston inherits Italian estate -- and pets

March 14, 2011 at 12:33 PM
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BOSTON, March 14 (UPI) -- Boston officials said the city inherited a $700,000 estate in Italy with a condition that officials see to the care and feeding of the resident cats and dogs.

The officials said Luciano Visocchi, who died at the age of 62 during the summer, left his estate, which includes a house and other property, to the city where his mother and aunt lived for several years prior to his birth, The Boston Globe reported Monday.

Visocchi put one important condition in his will.

"The city of Boston ... is obliged to look after the old dogs Argus and Jak," the will reads. "To feed the cat Rossina, easily recognizable from her great size, as well as the cats Giacchino, Rossino, Pasquale, Francesco and others as well."

Mayor Thomas Menino said officials were taken aback by news of the inheritance.

"It's unbelievable. I want to know who is going to feed the cats and dogs," Menino said. "They're over in Italy. What do you want me to do?"

The mayor joked he may send "some departments out there that get on my bad side."

The Italian newspaper Il Tempo said officials in Visocchi's hometown, Atina, may try to contest the will. The newspaper said an earlier draft of Visocchi's will bequeathed the estate to 18 local politicians and the officials are preparing for a "war of documents" to challenge Boston's claim to the property.

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