Anna Nicole Smith was using multiple doctors, pharmacies and associates to obtain prescription drugs under false names, according to testimony at a preliminary hearing Friday.
Jennifer Doss, a special agent with the California Department of Justice pharmaceutical task force, showed a judge how she traced prescriptions issued in the names of Smith’s boyfriend-lawyer, Howard Stern, an assistant of Smith and a series of fictitious names used by Smith over more than two years.
In addition, Homeland Security agent Kenneth Krause described travel records showing multiple flights by Stern and Smith’s psychiatrist, Khristine Eroshevich, to and from the Bahamas at times when prescriptions were picked up in California for the celebrity model.
Doss identified documents detailing the movement of controlled substances including Demerol, Dalmane, Lorazepam and methadone.
She said bottles bearing Stern’s name were later found in the home of Eroshevich, who is charged with Stern and Dr. Sandeep Kapoor of conspiring to illegally provide Smith with controlled substances.
All three have pleaded not guilty. A judge will rule after the preliminary hearing whether they will stand trial.
Stern’s lawyer Steve Sadow suggested in cross-examination that some of the medication was legitimately issued to Stern for a back problem and when he had botox injections.
Superior Court Judge Robert Perry stopped Doss as she tried to draw a correlation between the dates that prescriptions were picked up and the dates that Stern and Eroshevich left for the Bahamas.
“I’m supposed to be making a decision whether a crime was committed,” he said. “I don’t want her saying that she thinks a crime was committed.”
Doss identified multiple pharmacies used by Smith and offered a list of pseudonyms including Michelle Chase that were frequently used.
The defense contends that celebrities often use fake names on prescriptions and hospital records to protect their privacy.
Testimony in the hearing has shown that doctors and pharmacists cooperated in the ruse by Smith, even though they knew her true identity. Prosecutors say the use of fake names on prescriptions amounts to fraud by the defendants.
Smith died of an accidental overdose of at least nine prescription medications at a Florida hotel on Feb. 8, 2007. She was 39.
The hearing is expected to end next week.