There’s a new chapter in the ongoing drama in the aftermath of Anna Nicole Smith’s death.
Attorney Debra Opri, who had represented former Smith lover Larry Birkhead until they parted ways last March, filed a defamation lawsuit against Birkhead Monday in an L.A. court.
“After I chose to terminate our legal relationship, Larry Birkhead began a malicious and relentless media campaign to discredit me and to destroy my reputation,” Opri said in a statement announcing the lawsuit.
Birkhead, 34, the father of Smith’s daughter, Danielynn, has been locked in a legal battle with Opri over $620,000 in legal fees she says he owes her. Their feud heated up recently after claims in journalist Rita Cosby’s book Blonde Ambition quoted sources saying Opri had been concerned that Birkhead didn’t even know how to childhood proof his home prior to winning custody of his daughter.
Responding to the allegations last month, Birkhead told Us: “Every source that says something negative about me in that book is either in a fight with me or going to court with me.”
Opri’s statement Monday addressed the controversy over the Cosby book, stating, “It is clear now that Mr. Birkhead’s attempts to discredit me concerned what I knew and what might be exposed publicly…and not a legal bill. With the recent release of the Rita Cosby book: ‘Blonde Ambition,’ Mr. Birkhead’s attacks have escalated to include false and malicious allegations that I was a source for the book.
“My message today to Larry Birkhead is… I have had enough.”
Birkhead couldn’t be reached for comment.