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Published: Thursday, 7/21/2011

Casey Anthony gets job offers, taxpayers get legal bill

REUTERS

ORLANDO, Fla. — The $537 balance Casey Anthony received from her jail canteen fund is hardly enough to live on, but the Florida woman seems to be managing fine since her release from custody on Sunday.

Her lawyers won’t reveal where she went or who is funding her new life on the outside, but say the 25-year-old Anthony is safe and has received hundreds of job and housing offers.

Florida taxpayers will receive the bill for Anthony’s high-profile prosecution, which ended on July 5 with a jury acquitting her of killing her 2-year-old daughter Caylee in 2008.

Taxpayers began picking up Anthony’s legal expenses in March 2010 after she ran out of money and was declared indigent by the courts.

So far, the state has reimbursed her defense lawyers for $119,000 in expenses, according to the Justice Administrative Commission. Another $5,800 bill from the defense is pending, records show.

Prosecutors have not finalized their overall expenses but have identified at least $91,000 in costs, State Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Danielle Tavernier said.

Still being calculated are the costs of the massive, three-year police investigation that began in July 2008 when Caylee Anthony was reported missing. Casey Anthony falsely claimed her daughter had been kidnapped by a nanny.

The toddler’s skeletal remains were found in December 2008 in woods near the Anthony family’s home.

Casey Anthony was convicted of misdemeanor charges of lying to detectives during the investigation and sentenced to the maximum four years in jail. But with credit for time served awaiting trial and good behavior while in jail, she spent less than two weeks more behind bars after her sentencing.

Anthony has indicated she will appeal her convictions and is requesting that the state continue to fund her defense.

An August 25 hearing is scheduled for Judge Belvin Perry to decide what portion of the trial and investigative costs Anthony should bear. After that, the question will be whether she is able to pay up.

Anthony’s defense attorneys have not returned calls for comment from Reuters.

Taxpayers aren’t the only ones with a stake in Anthony’s financial resources. Lawyers for a woman suing Anthony for defamation filed a motion on Wednesday demanding information about any book, movie or interview deals she has been offered.

The lawyers also want to know about any offers for appearances on television shows or in advertisements, or for purchasing the rights to any documents in Anthony’s possession.

Speculation abounds that Anthony could sign a rich contract to tell her story, and theories over her whereabouts since her jail release have also run wild. Lead criminal defense lawyer Jose Baez told Orlando station WKMG that Anthony left town.

“She’s not here in Orlando,” Baez said



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