A judge ruled that Casey Anthony will not be forced to answer questions about her daughter Caylee. (Video by FOX35)

Casey Anthony will not be forced to answer questions in a deposition about what happened to her 2-year-old daughter Caylee, who was found dead about six months after she disappeared in 2008, a federal judge in Tampa ruled Tuesday.

Although attorneys for Zenaida Gonzalez, who is suing Anthony for defamation, cannot ask where Caylee was, they can question Anthony as to why she made up a story in which she accused a nanny named Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez of kidnapping her daughter, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge K. Rodney May ruled.

"We're not thrilled with the ruling," said Gonzalez's attorney, R. Scott Shuker of Orlando.

In a Jan. 23 deposition, Anthony, 27, admitted she lied about "Zanny the Nanny," saying neither the nanny nor the woman who is suing her had kidnapped Caylee. The child had been living with her mother and grandparents in southeast Orange County before she vanished.


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Anthony then refused to answer attorneys' questions about where Caylee was when she made up the kidnapping story.

The larger issue is whether Gonzalez's lawsuit will survive Anthony's bankruptcy case For that to happen, Shuker said he must prove Anthony acted "willfully and maliciously" in damaging Gonzalez's reputation.

Anthony was found not guilty of murdering her daughter but convicted of lying to law-enforcement officers. The July 2011 trial in Orlando attracted international attention.

sjacobson@tribune.com or 407-540-5981