Mike Bedigan, PA Los Angeles Correspondent
Angelina Jolie has claimed her former husband Brad Pitt was “emotionally and physically abusive” towards her and their children, which resulted in her filing for a divorce.
In new legal filings, lawyers representing the actress detailed a series of alleged violent incidents, which took place on an aeroplane in September 2016.
The claims come in a cross complaint by Jolie as part of the Hollywood power couple’s ongoing legal dispute over the selling of their co-owned vineyard in the south of France.
The allegations of the alleged 2016 incidents had previously been contained in a redacted FBI report that was made at the time.
Documents filed on Wednesday in Los Angeles and obtained by the PA news agency, claim that Pitt “verbally attacked” his ex-wife and at one point “lunged” at one of his children.
“On September 14th, 2016, Jolie’s marriage came to an end. On that day, Jolie, Pitt and their children were flying to Los Angeles from Chateau Miraval,” the documents stated.
“Throughout the long, overnight flight, Pitt was physically and emotionally abusive to Jolie and their children, who were then between the ages of eight and 15.
“After that flight, for her family’s wellbeing, Jolie decided to file for divorce.”
The filing went on to claim that Pitt’s “aggressive behaviour” had begun before boarding the plane, being confrontational with the children and Jolie, before continuing onboard.
“When one of the children verbally defended Jolie, Pitt lunged at his own child and Jolie grabbed him from behind to stop him.
“To get Jolie off his back, Pitt threw himself backwards into the airplane’s seats injuring Jolie’s back and elbow.
“The children rushed in and all bravely tried to protect each other. Before it was over, Pitt choked one of the children and struck another in the face.
“Some of the children pleaded with Pitt to stop. They were all frightened. Many were crying.”
The documents went on to claim that Pitt had continued in an aggressive manner, swearing at the family and at one point “pouring beer and red wine on the children”.
After landing, Pitt allegedly also stopped the family from disembarking from the aircraft and physically abused one of his children again.
Following the incident, Jolie filed for divorce five days later on September 19th, 2016 and an FBI investigation was launched.
“After interviewing various witnesses, the FBI agent who conducted the investigation concluded that the government had probable cause to charge Pitt with a federal crime for his conduct that day, and the agent prepared a probable cause statement for referral to the United States Attorney’s Office for prosecution,” the documents stated.
The filing added that Jolie “has gone to great lengths to try to shield their children from reliving the pain Pitt inflicted on the family that day.”
“When Pitt filed this lawsuit seeking to reassert control over Jolie’s financial life and compel her to rejoin her ex-husband as a frozen-out business partner, Pitt forced Jolie to publicly defend herself on these issues for the first time,” they stated.
The ongoing dispute between the couple centres around the sale of their stakes in Chateau Miraval SA, a French company comprising a home and vineyard in the south of France, which they purchased in 2008.
Pitt has previously accused Jolie of orchestrating a “hostile” takeover of the wine business that he had “carefully built” and forced him into partnership with “a stranger with poisonous associations and intentions” – Russian oligarch Yuri Shefler.
The Miraval estate is located in the village of Correns in south-eastern France, and was bought by the couple for around €25 million.
According to the legal documents obtained by PA, Pitt contributed 60 per cent to the purchase price, with Jolie paying the remaining 40 per cent.
If you have been affected by any of the issues raised in this article, you can contact Women’s Aid (24-hour freephone helpline at 1800-341 900, email firstname.lastname@example.org) or Men’s Aid Ireland (confidential helpline at 01-554 3811, email email@example.com) for support and information.
Safe Ireland also outlines a number of local services and helplines at safeireland.ie/get-help/where-to-find-help/. In the case of an emergency, always dial 999/112.