July 28, 2009 in Nation/World

Judge orders financial guardian for octuplets

Associated Press
 

ORANGE, Calif. – A California judge appointed a lawyer Monday to oversee the estate of Nadya Suleman’s octuplets, saying he wanted to ensure they weren’t exploited by reality television shows, tabloid photo spreads or other paid ventures.

Orange County Superior Court Judge Gerald Johnston dismissed arguments for family privacy and ruled Monday that an independent party should be appointed to scrutinize the finances of the octuplets.

The petition was filed on behalf of Paul Peterson, a former Disney Mouseketeer who is an advocate for the fair treatment of children in entertainment.

During a brief hearing, Arthur J. LaCilento, a lawyer for Suleman, called for the petition to be dismissed based on the family’s needs for privacy.

A reality show is slated to start filming Suleman and her 14 children, all under age 8, on Sept. 1. The children’s reality television contracts were filed in Los Angeles Superior Court on Friday and await a judge’s approval.

Collectively, the children stand to earn nearly $250,000 over a three-year period of filming in the contract with a European production company.

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