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Stepmom Drops Suit Against Minnelli

May 14, 2002

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LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Liza Minnelli’s 94-year-old stepmother has dropped her lawsuit accusing the entertainer of elder abuse and breach of contract.

``I can’t sue Liza,″ Lee Anderson Minnelli told Superior Court Judge Gregory O’Brien Jr. on Monday.

In the action filed last month, Minnelli claimed that her late husband, Vincente Minnelli, guaranteed her housing in his will, but her stepdaughter recently sold the Beverly Hills home where she’d lived for 40 years and instructed her representatives to remove her stepmother by ``whatever means necessary.″

The diminutive woman, who came to court in a wheelchair, told the judge she knew dropping the lawsuit could result in her having to move, but her attorney, Tamara Green, said she didn’t believe that was clear to Minnelli.

Green added that her client had been influenced by a phone call from her stepdaughter on Monday. Outside court, Minnelli acknowledged the entertainer had called her.

``She just said, ’Hello, Mummy. Be out there in two weeks and we’ll go and have dinner at Spago,‴ she said.

She also told reporters she never wanted to sue Minnelli.

``I love her,″ she said. ``She’s my daughter.″

Liza Minnelli declined to comment. Her spokesman, Warren Cowan, said previously that she has treated her stepmother generously, paying her expenses and offering to buy her a condominium to replace the home.

The lawsuit accused Minnelli of breaching an agreement to keep the home in habitable condition by having the electricity turned off on March 27 and firing the gardener and pool cleaner.

``While defendant is honeymooning all over the world, having fed 850 of her closest friends a 12-foot cake, plaintiff is alone in a cold, dark house,″ the lawsuit stated.

Liza Minnelli married producer David Gest in a lavish New York wedding in March.

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