Lawyers: Chess icon Bobby Fischer didn't father girl

Champion's remains exhumed in July for paternity test. Struggle for his estate continues

Published August 17, 2010 9:26PM (EDT)

DNA tests have shown that chess genius Bobby Fischer was not the father of a 9-year-old girl from the Philippines, bringing a paternity claim against his estate to a close, two lawyers familiar with the case said Tuesday.

The test result was announced in Reykjavik District Court, said lawyer Gudjon Olafur Jonsson, who represents Fischer's two American nephews in their own claim on his estate.

Fischer's remains were exhumed in July so samples could be taken to determine if he had fathered Jinky Young, whose mother Marilyn said she had a relationship with the chess icon. Jinky, who lives in the Philippines with her mother, flew to Iceland last year to provide her own sample.

"I can confirm that the result of the DNA report excluded Bobby Fisher from being the father of Jinky Young, and therefore the case has come to a close," said lawyer Thordur Bogason, who represents Jinky.

Though the paternity case has ended, the wrangling over Fischer's estate continues. He died aged 64 in Iceland in January 2008, leaving no will.

Jonsson said the elimination of the paternity claim simplifies the case between Fischer's nephews and the woman who was his long-term partner. The case is scheduled to be heard in Reykjavik next month, Jonsson said, adding he hopes for a result by the end of the year.

Fischer was born in Chicago and raised in Brooklyn, New York. His 1972 defeat of Boris Spassky of the Soviet Union for the world chess championship -- a tournament that was played in Reykjavik -- made him world-famous and an American hero.

But later, Fischer would become an erratic figure, losing his world title in 1975 after refusing to defend it and then dropping out of competitive chess.

He spent time in the Philippines and Hungary, and was arrested in Japan in 2004. Fischer was threatened with extradition to the U.S. to face charges of breaking international sanctions against the former Yugoslavia by playing a chess match there in 1992.

Fischer renounced his American citizenship, and was then taken in by Iceland in 2005, a chess-loving nation, which gave him citizenship. Fischer is buried about 30 miles (50 kilometers) east of the capital, Reykjavik.

By Jennifer Quinn

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