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'Queen of Mean' leaves mutt $12m

Two grandchildren, though, get sweet FA

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Property billionaire Leona Helmsley - aka the "Queen of Mean", and who died earlier this month aged 87 - has left her pet dog $12m while bequeathing sweet FA to two of her grandchildren, the Telegraph reports.

The late moneybags' mutt, a white Maltese named Trouble, described as "a former Helmsley advertising star and a dog with a track record of biting members of staff", will benefit from a trust fund and, when the times comes, will be laid to rest beside his mistress in the Helmsley mausoleum in Westchester County, New York.

Helmsley's brother Alvin Rosenthal also trousered millions of dollars, on the proviso he look after Trouble. Two of her four grandchildren from her late son, Jay Panzirer, copped $5m each, "on condition they visit their father's grave once each calendar year".

The other two, however, got not a dime "for reasons that are known to them", according to the will. This is not the first time Panzirer's kids have been short-changed. When he popped his clogs intestate back in 1982, Helmsley "sued to claim most of his estate, leaving her four grandchildren with just $432 apiece".

Other provisions of the will were $100,000 for her chauffeur, Nicholas Celea, and $3m for the maintenance of her modest $1.4m final resting place.

Helmsley will be best remembered for her assertion that "Only the little people pay taxes". In 1998, she was proved wrong when indicted and subsequently convicted for tax evasion. ®

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