By Lisa Richwine
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A Los Angeles judge tentatively ruled on Friday that certain documents can be made public in a lawsuit that challenges the mental competency of 92-year-old media mogul Sumner Redstone.
Medical records will remain sealed to protect Redstone's privacy, Judge David Cowan said. But he said 15 documents should be unsealed, including emails written by Redstone's nurses and a December letter from Redstone to his daughter.
Redstone's attorneys had asked the court to seal certain information in the case in order to protect the billionaire' s privacy. The Los Angeles Times, Variety and the Hollywood Reporter argued the information should be released in the public interest, given Redstone's role as controlling shareholder of Viacom Inc and CBS Corp.
Redstone's ex-girlfriend, Manuela Herzer, is challenging her removal last year as the mogul's healthcare agent, saying he was not mentally competent to make that decision. His attorneys say he was fully aware of his actions. The case is set for trial in May.
A psychiatrist hired by Herzer, Dr. Stephen Read, filed a 37-page report about the results of a Jan. 29 exam of Redstone. That document has not been made public.
(Reporting by Jessica Toonkel; Editing by Cynthia Osterman and Paul Simao)