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Judge in Anna Nicole Smith case says he'll retire

Story Highlights

• Judge Larry Seidlin says he'll retire at the end of July
• "Judge Larry" presided colorfully over part of the the Anna Nicole Smith case
• Florida judge's style, which included weeping in court, is controversial
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(CNN) -- The Florida judge noted for his unorthodox oversight of the Anna Nicole Smith case says he is retiring at the end of July.

"As a judge, I have been deeply touched by the thousands of children and families in crisis who have come before me to share their struggles," Broward County Circuit Judge Larry Seidlin wrote June 13 to Florida Gov. Charlie Crist.

"I hope that by working together, we have made a positive difference in their lives," Seidlin added. "I consider myself among the most fortunate people on earth."

The letter was made public Tuesday.

"Nevertheless," he continued, "it is now time for me to devote more of my daily life to my own young family and to pursue the many opportunities that have been offered to me outside the judicial system, and I have disregarded until now."

The 57-year-old Bronx native wept on the bench during his oversight of the disposition of Smith's remains.

CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin referred to him as "Judge Judy's wacky little brother."

Some observers speculated he was using his platform as a dais from which to try out for a job on television.


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Judge Larry Seidlin bristled at accusations that his courtroom became a three-ring circus.

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