Anna Nicole Smith has won the right to pursue her late husband's fortune. Yesterday, the US Supreme Court overturned an appeal court ruling stating the former exotic dancer wasn't entitled to the millions she said her spouse, 89-year-old Texas oil tycoon Howard Marshall, promised her.

The former Playboy centrefold - who was just 26 when she wed Marshall in 1994 - has been in a decade-long court battle to inherit part of the $1.6 billion estate her late husband left when he died in 1995. The blonde actress always claimed her husband promised her half of his estate, but his son, E Pierce Marshall, insisted the $6 million his father gave her in gifts was all he had ever wanted her to get. A Texas court ruled Marshall was entitled to his dad's estate, but a California court later awarded $474 million to Smith. The appeals court then ruled she was not entitled to anything. The decision has now been overturned, and Smith, 38, is now able to fight for her husband's money in a federal court.

Copyright 2006 BANG Media International

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