Mel Gibson In Bitter Child Custody Battle With Ex

Actor-producer Mel Gibson has some real-life drama in his life. Gibson, 54, is engaged in a high-profile child custody battle with his ex-girlfriend, Russian singer Oksana Grigorieva, 40. The couple split after a two-year relationship. Gibson is fighting to receive joint custody of their ten-month-old daughter. Further, he is seeking a reduction in the $20,000 per month child support payment he has been ordered to pay.

The relationship between the two has been tumultuous. Grigorieva calls Gibson a "rich bully" who verbally and physically abused her. She has accused him of punching her in the face and threatening to kill her during arguments. Grigorieva recorded several of Gibson's tirades, in which he yelled and swore at her. The recordings were leaked to the public, which Gibson accuses her of doing in an attempt to extort him. Grigorieva denies having anything to do with the leaking of the tapes.

According to TMZ.com, Grigorieva has many advocates to help her plead her case. The website reports that she has hired 40 attorneys to represent her in her case against Gibson. While many of these attorneys have quit or been fired, some high-profile attorneys remain. One of her attorneys reportedly advised Elin Nordegren in her divorce from Tiger Woods. Eighteen of Grigorieva's attorneys have already submitted legal bills totaling more than $1 million. The attorneys are seeking payment from Gibson.

Grigorieva's newest attorney says reports that she has 40 attorneys are exaggerated. According to the attorney, she has a few firms representing her with other lawyers from the firms helping out when necessary.

Source: NYDailyNews.com "Oksana Grigorieva hired 39 lawyers to help fight legal battle against ex Mel Gibson: report," Rosemary Black, 18 October 2010

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