Cher, Actor Want Sonny's Money

Ex-wife and man claiming to be illegitimate son suing for piece of late popster's estate

By Marcus Errico Apr 20, 1999 10:30 PMTags
I got your DNA, babe...

That's the tune being sung by one Sean Machu, a wannabe actor who says he's Sonny Bono's illegitimate son and consequently deserves a chunk of the late politico/popster's estate.

On Monday, a California judge ruled that the coroner who autopsied Bono must turn over a blood sample so authorities can determine if indeed Machu, 35, is Bono's love child.

If that weren't bad enough, Bono's well-heeled ex-partner,Cher, is also demanding some of Sonny's money, and has filed a claim against his $1.7 million estate seeking back alimony payments. No specific amount was cited in court papers.

Sonny was killed in January 1998 after skiing into a tree. He was 62.

His widow and successor in Congress, Mary Bono, has said she would not contest Machu's claim if the DNA matches, the (Riverside, California) Press-Enterprise reports. Likewise, Machu says he'll give up his claim if the genes don't jibe.

In his autobiography The Beat Goes On, Bono admitted to having an affair with Machu's mother. Machu's birth certificate lists Salvatore Bono (aka Sonny) as the father.

According to court documents, results of the paternity test will be sealed.

Sonny's estate is already set to be divvied up between his two young children with Mary, and his grown daughters, Chastity Bono (his child with Cher) and Christy Bono Fasce (from his first marriage).