Angelina Jolie “sought to inflict harm” on her former husband Brad Pitt selling her stake in their co-owned vineyard to a Russian oligarch, new legal documents have claimed.
he sale helped launch a “hostile” takeover of the wine business that the actor had “carefully built” and forced him into partnership with “a stranger with poisonous associations and intentions”.
The former Hollywood power couple purchased a controlling interest in Chateau Miraval SA, a French company comprising a home and vineyard in the south of France, in 2008.
Lawyers on behalf of the Fight Club star said under his stewardship, the business had grown into a “multimillion-dollar international success story” though Jolie had “contributed nothing”.
According to the lawsuit, Jolie sold her stake to a Luxembourg-based spirits manufacturer controlled by Russian oligarch Yuri Shefler, without Pitt’s knowledge.
“Through the purported sale, Jolie sought to inflict harm on Pitt,” documents filed last week and obtained by the PA news agency said.
“Jolie knew and intended that Shefler and his affiliates would try to control the business Pitt had built and to undermine Pitt’s investment in Miraval.”
It added that Shefler “has gained notoriety through cutthroat business tactics and dubious professional associations” and the association with him “jeopardises the reputation of the brand Pitt so carefully built”.
“All of this is the direct result of Jolie’s unlawful and tortious conduct.”
“In violation of the parties’ agreement, Jolie has sought to force Pitt into partnership with a stranger, and worse yet, a stranger with poisonous associations and intentions.”
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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 the PA news agency, Pitt contributed 60pc to the purchase price, with Jolie paying the remaining 40pc.
Lawyers also said the wine business at the property continues to flourish and “though she benefited from Miraval’s success, Jolie had no involvement in these efforts”.
She filed for divorce in 2016.
Jolie reportedly informed Pitt of her decision to sell to Shefler in January 2021, saying she had reached a “painful decision, with a heavy heart”.
Lawyers for Pitt have requested a trial by jury.