Executor of O.J. Simpson’s estate plans to fight payout to the families of Brown and Goldman

LAS VEGAS– The executor of OJ Simpson’s estate says he will work to prevent the payment of a $33.5 million verdict handed down nearly three decades ago by a California civil jury in a wrongful death lawsuit brought by the families of Simpson’s ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her boyfriend Ron. Goudman.

Simpson’s will was filed Friday in a Clark County court in Nevada, with his longtime attorney, Malcolm LaVergne, named as executor. The document shows that Simpson’s properties were placed in a trust set up this year.

LaVergne told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that Simpson’s entire estate has not been totaled. Under Nevada law, an estate must be processed through the courts if the assets exceed $20,000.

Simpson died Wednesday without paying the lion’s share of the civil judgment handed down in 1997 after jurors found him liable. Now that his assets are set to go through the courts, the Goldman and Brown families could be lining up to get a piece of what Simpson left behind.

LaVergne, who has represented Simpson since 2009, said he specifically did not want the Goldman family to see any money from Simpson’s estate.

“I hope the Goldmans get zero, nothing,” he told the Review-Journal. “Them specifically. And I will do everything in my capacity as executor or personal representative to ensure that they get nothing.”

LaVergne did not immediately return phone and email messages left by The Associated Press on Saturday.

Although the Brown and Goldman families have pushed for payment, LaVergne said there was never a court order forcing Simpson to pay the civil judgment. The attorney told the Review-Journal that his specific anger toward the Goldman family stemmed in part from the events surrounding Simpson’s planned book, titled “If I Did It.” Goldman’s family gained control of the manuscript and retitled the book, “If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer.”

Simpson made fame and fortune through show business, but his legacy was forever changed by the June 1994 knife murders of his ex-wife and her boyfriend in Los Angeles. He was acquitted of criminal charges in 1995 in a trial that fascinated the public.

Goldman’s father Fred Goldman, the lead prosecutor, always said it was never about the money, just about holding Simpson accountable. And he said in a statement Thursday that with Simpson’s death, “the hope for real accountability has ended.”

The Goldman and Brown families will at least be on equal footing with other creditors and will likely have an even stronger claim as Simpson’s estate is settled under terms set by the trust established in January. The will lists his four children and notes that any beneficiary who wishes to contest the terms of the will “shall receive without trust one dollar ($1.00) and no more in lieu of any claimed interest in this will or its assets .”

Simpson said he lived solely on his NFL and private pensions. Hundreds of valuables had been seized as part of the jury award, and Simpson was forced to auction off his Heisman Trophy, which raised $230,000.