By Obiajulu Chiagoziem
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt have both been on a long run over custody for awhile now. Recently, Angelina Jolie has accused him, Brad, of using his celebrity status to get special treatment in their long-running custody dispute.
This started when Pitt’s attorney started a bid for the dismissal of the judge overseeing the custody fight.
In retailation, Jolie’s legal team via court papers stated that: “This sort of gamesmanship, a last-ditch effort by a celebrity litigant seeking special treatment, is not what this Court’s limited review resources are for.
“There is nothing to see or review here. There is no issue meeting this Court’s rigorous standards for, or worthy of, review.”
In June, Pitt, 57, was awarded joint custody of their children, a decision that Jolie, 45, vowed to fight on the grounds that three of their six children wanted to testify against Pitt, but were blocked from doing so by Judge John Ouderkirk, the private judge to whom Pitt and Jolie initially agreed in a bid to keep the details of their case sealed.
However, Jolie won the major victory when her lawyers convinced a California appeal court that Judge Ouderkirk should be excluded from the hearing on the ground that Pitt didn’t disclose some facts of the case as relating to the previous dealings he had with the actor’s attorneys.
Pitt’s legal team now wants an appeal as they seek permission to fight the decision, but Jolie’s filing stated that the Court of Appeal was unanimous in finding that Ouderkirk violated the clear mandate of the Code of Judicial Ethics.
The statement reads: “There is no serious question that a privately compensated judge who, without full disclosure, has secured a favorable repeat customer relationship with one litigant’s counsel must be disqualified,”
Information gotten from Pitt attorney Theodore J. Boutrous Jr stated that: “The lower court’s ruling will reward parties who are losing child custody cases, and condone their gamesmanship, by allowing them to wait and see about the likely direction of the case before seeking the disqualification of the judge.
“Condoning the use of this type of strategic ‘lie in wait’ disqualification challenge will cause irreparable harm to both the children and families involved in this case, and other families in other cases, by unnecessarily prolonging the resolution of these disputes in an already overburdened court system.
“Allowing this kind of crafty litigation strategy will deprive parents of irreplaceable time with their children as judges are disqualified for minor reasons in the midst of their cases.
“Nothing in the opposition brief calls into question the urgent need for California Supreme Court review, nor does the opposition address nor refute the important fact that the lower court’s ruling is bad for children and bad for California’s overburdened judicial system.” it concluded.
Jolie and Pitt first met on the set of of Mr & Mrs Smith in 2004. At the time Brad was married to Jennifer Aniston, making him one half of the most adored celebrity couple in a generation. Jolie on her part, was twice divorced when she met Brad – having been hitched first to British actor Jonny Lee Miller and then Billy Bob Thornton.
After seven years of marriage, in 2005 Brad and Jennifer announced their separation. This brought about some speculations about whether Angelina was in the middle of the failed marriage. However, both Brad and Angelina have always denied that their relationship started as an affair.
“To be intimate with a married man, when my own father cheated on my mother, is not something I could forgive,” Angelina had said. “I could not look at myself in the morning if I did that. I wouldn’t be attracted to a man who would cheat on his wife.”
In January 2006, Angelina confirmed to People that she was pregnant with tags and Brad’s first child. It would be the first time she’d publicly acknowledged their relationship. They eventually got married in 2014.
Two years later, precisely in September 2016, Angelina filed for divorce, citing irreconcilable differences. The FBI and the Los Angeles
Department of Children and Family Services confirmed they were investigating Brad for alleged child abuse following an incident on the family’s private jet. The actor was accused by an anonymous person of getting physical with one of his children.