Heirs claim son stole money from man's estate

Kelly Holleran Feb. 9, 2010, 6:34am

The independent executrix of a deceased man's estate has filed suit against the man's son, saying he attempted to steal money from his father.

Kathleen W. Rogers claims defendant William H. Newnum Jr. served as his father's attorney-in-fact, and allegedly used the position to transfer "substantial assets" from his father's account to his own.

"All of Defendant's actions were performed intentionally in an effort to steal assets from his own father to the betterment of himself," the suit filed Feb. 3 in Jefferson County District Court states. "The Defendant's actions substantially reduced the assets owned by Decedent prior to his death which caused a drastic reduction in the value of his father's estate."

William H. Newnum Sr. demanded his son to reveal the transactions he made, but William H. Newnum Jr. refused to do so, according to the complaint.

Soon thereafter, William H. Newnum died on Nov. 3, leaving Rogers as executrix of his estate, the complaint says.

Now, Rogers says she and William H. Newnum III have been denied their just inheritances.

In her complaint, Rogers accuses William H. Newnum Jr. of conversion, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, theft and tortuous interference with inheritance rights.

She is seeking statutory and exemplary damages, plus attorneys' fees, pre- and post-judgment interest, costs and other relief to which she may be entitled.

Stuart Yoes of The Yoes Law Firm in Beaumont will be representing her.

The case has been assigned to Judge Bob Wortham, 58th District Court.

Jefferson County District Court case number: A185-855.

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