As the only child of New York’s beloved white-gloved philanthropist Brooke Astor, Anthony Marshall spent years preoccupied with how much he would inherit from his mother, who eventually died at age 105 in 2007. He envisioned a life in which he and his much younger third wife, Charlene, would not only live well but also have the pleasure of passing out the tens of millions left behind by his stepfather Vincent Astor, wielding clout on boards like the Metropolitan Museum.
But on Wednesday, Marshall, who was convicted three years ago of defrauding his mother’s estate, agreed to accept a settlement of a relatively paltry (for him) $14.4 million. Not only is this less than half of the riches that he expected, but the 87-year-old former ambassador also gave up all rights to distribute his mother’s charitable legacy. Since the four law firms that handled his criminal trial and probate fight have filed judgments totaling $11.6 million against him, he will not be awash in cash. “Mr. Marshall is pleased that a settlement has been reached,” his longtime lawyer Kenneth Warner wrote in a statement. “He is almost 88 years old and much prefers closure to an expensive and protracted litigation over his mother’s estate.”
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The Astor Settlement: Anthony Marshall’s Friends and Family React