No prison time sought in Anna Nicole case

Anna Nicole Smith is seen leaving the U.S. Supreme Court, on Feb. 28, 2006. (Manuel Balce Ceneta)

January 5, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
Prosecutors in the Anna Nicole Smith drug conspiracy case are urging a judge to drop prison time for her psychiatrist and lawyer-boyfriend convicted of obtaining drugs for her under false names.

The day before their scheduled sentencing, lawyers for Dr. Khristine Eroshevich and Howard K. Stern are asking to have their convictions reduced to misdemeanors or dismissed in the interest of justice. They are urging the judge to choose felony probation, community service and fines instead of prison time.

In written motions, the lawyers say using pseudonyms to protect celebrity clients in medical situations is a common practice. They also accuse the district attorney's office of singling out the doctor and lawyer for prosecution "for political and publicity purposes, not justice."

Superior Court Judge Robert Perry, who presided over their nine-week trial, has the option to sentence them to up to three years and eight months behind bars at a hearing Thursday.

In a memo Tuesday, Deputy District Attorney Sean Carney advocated sentencing both defendants to five years of supervised felony probation, 300 hours each of community service, with Stern working for Caltrans, California's highway maintenance department.

The memo also suggested Eroshevich's community service be directed by the California Medical Board and that each defendant pay a $5,000 fine.

Carney also asked that Eroshevich be barred from prescribing controlled substances, severely limiting her ability to continue practicing medicine.

Stern and Eroshevich are seeking dismissal, a new trial or reduction of their convictions to misdemeanors. A third defendant, Dr. Sandeep Kapoor, was acquitted of all charges and the jury deadlocked on several counts.

Smith died of a drug overdose in 2007.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.