DNA tests on chess champion's corpse exclude paternity

REYKJAVIK (Reuters) - DNA tests on former chess champion Bobby Fischer’s corpse have shown that he was not the father of a Filipino girl, as claimed by his former lover, an attorney involved in the dispute said on Tuesday.

Former world chess champion Bobby Fischer gestures during his match against his archrival Boris Spassky of the Soviet Union, in the Yugoslav resort of Sveti Stefan in this September 1992 file photo. REUTERS/Ivan Milutinovic

Fischer’s lover had stated that he fathered her daughter, Jinky Young, while living in the Philippines in 2001. In June, Iceland’s Supreme Court agreed to her demand that his remains be exhumed to obtain tissue samples and settle the paternity suit.

“I can confirm that the results of the DNA tests show that Bobby Fischer is not the father of the Filipino girl, Jinky Young,” said Gudjon Jonsson, a lawyer representing Fischer’s two nephews who are also involved in the dispute.

Among evidence produced during the court proceedings was a 2004 photo of Fischer with Jinky and her mother and a postcard to Jinky from Fischer, signed “Daddy.”

“This will have the effect that the Filipino girl is out of the legal dispute, and so the next step will be to find out who is the lawful heir of Bobby Fischer,” he told Reuters.

Jonsson said the dispute -- over who will inherit an estate estimated at around $2 million -- was now between Fischer’s nephews, relatives in the United States and a Japanese woman who claims she was his wife.

The court case over the long-running inheritance dispute is still before a Reykjavik court and proceedings are expected to continue next month.

In December 2009, the Supreme Court overturned a municipal court decision which had declared the Japanese woman the rightful heir, saying definite proof of the marriage had not been made available.

Fischer, who spent his last years as a fugitive from U.S. authorities because he defied international sanctions against the former Yugoslavia, spent time in the Philippines and Japan before moving to Iceland, where he was offered citizenship in the mid-2000s.

The former child prodigy became the United States’ only world chess champion by defeating Soviet masters, but refused to defend his title and relinquished it to the Soviet champion Anatoly Karpov in 1975.

Fischer died in Reykjavik at the age of 64 after an unspecified illness and was buried near the town of Selfoss, about 60 km (40 miles) east of Reykjavik, in 2008.

Editing by Maria Golovnina