Anna Nicole Smith's Diaries Fail to Sell; Stern Files Slander Suit

Two diaries written by Anna Nicole Smith in the early 1990s failed to sell at an auction this weekend, but are now available for a minimum bid of $25,000 each, the auction house said Sunday.

"We have a buy-it-now situation," said Doug Norwine, the director of music and entertainment memorabilia at Heritage Auction Galleries of Dallas.

There were at least two bidders on the diaries, but both pulled out of the auction that ended Saturday. Among their concerns were allegations by Smith's lawyer-turned-partner, Howard K. Stern, that the diaries had been stolen and should be returned to her estate, Norwine said.

"They just got cold feet," he said.

The auction house obtained the journals and other items from an anonymous German businessman who purchased the items on eBay for more than $500,000 several weeks ago. The German businessman decided to auction the diaries after securing the publishing rights, Norwine said.

Norwine said he had vetted the history of the journals and believed they were legitimately obtained by a celebrity memorabilia dealer in Los Angeles before going up for sale on eBay.

The diaries from 1992 and 1994 cover a range of topics, from Smith's love for her late husband, octogenarian oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall II, to concerns about her eating.

In other news, Stern filed a slander lawsuit Friday against an attorney for Smith's estranged mother who has suggested Stern was involved in Smith's death.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in West Palm Beach, also accuses attorney John O'Quinn of invasion of privacy and seeks unspecified damages.

A telephone message left by The Associated Press on Friday afternoon for O'Quinn was not immediately returned. O'Quinn is representing Smith's mother, Virgie Arthur, in a custody battle over Smith's baby.

Smith died in February at age 39 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. The medical examiner in the case ruled her death an accidental drug overdose.

According to the lawsuit, O'Quinn appeared on several national television shows in which he suggested Stern murdered Smith.

During an interview in Fort Lauderdale, O'Quinn told FOX News' Greta Van Susteren that Arthur believed Stern had murdered her daughter and that O'Quinn agreed with her.

O'Quinn also suggested on MSNBC that Stern had ulterior motives for wanting to see Smith's will days before Smith died.

"The public airwaves should never be used to promote personal agendas or vendettas," Stern's attorneys L. Lin Wood said in a statement issued Friday.

The lawsuit came days after a DNA expert revealed Smith's former boyfriend, Los Angeles photographer Larry Birkhead, was the father of Smith's baby, not Stern. Stern has said he would not fight to retain custody of 7-month-old Dannielynn. But Arthur is seeking visitation rights.

Smith gave birth to Dannielynn in September in a Bahamas hospital, days before her 20-year-old son, Daniel, died from a lethal combination of drugs at her bedside.

Meanwhile, legal wrangling continues over the estate of Smith's late husband, Texas oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall II, who died in 1995. It remains unclear how much, if any, of the $500 million Marshall estate Dannielynn might inherit and whether her guardian would have access to the money.