Brad Pitt has been awarded joint custody of his children with Angelina Jolie after a lengthy court battle, confirmed this Wednesday the site Page Six.
The 57-year-old actor has been fighting his 45-year-old ex-wife in court for almost five years for equal rights in raising children and she has finally succeeded despite Jolie’s attempts to prevent it.
Judge John ouderkirk, the private judge hired by the former couple to handle the divorce case, made his thoughts clear in a long fault recently, after months of eyewitness testimony, including child service professionals who interviewed the actors’ children and others who have been around the family.
“There was a significant change in the custody agreements based on an extremely detailed decision made by the judge. Brad was just trying to spend more time with his kids, and it has become clear that she has done everything she can to avoid it.“Said a source with knowledge of the case to the aforementioned media. “This trial lasted several months and there were a lot of witnesses, experts, therapists and others who have been with and around the children, and the decision was based on this.”He added.
Another source close to the issue added that Jolie continues her legal fight. “Shared custody is not the issue that Angelina opposes, there were other issues of concern, but the court proceedings are closed and sealed”said the informant.
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s children did not testify against their father
The request of Jolie’s calling her children to testify about the custody issue did not go as expected. Ouderkirk refused to allow the children of the actors to testify.
The Oscar winner criticized the California magistrate’s decision for not wanting to take into account the evidence that, according to her, is relevant to determining the safety and well-being of children. “Judge Ouderkirk denied Ms. Jolie a fair trial, improperly excluding her evidence relevant to the health, safety and welfare of the children, critical evidence to present her case “say the appeals filed in court by Jolie’s legal representatives.
The actress’s legal team insists that the judge “has refused to listen to the opinion of minors about their experiences, needs or wishes regarding their custody destination”Something that does not comply with California law according to which a child 14 years and older must be able to testify if they wish.
Jolie also claims that the magistrate “has not adequately considered” the section of the California court code that he says is detrimental to the interest of the child that custody is awarded to a person with a history of domestic violence, without detailing the facts to which it refers.
Angelina has tried to disqualify Ouderkirk on the grounds that she has a improper business relationship with one of Pitt’s attorneys. In addition, the actress has assured that if the magistrate made the decision to give Brad part of custody, he will appeal.
Pitt’s lawyers defend the judge’s work.
The legal representatives of the actor, unlike Jolie, consider that “Ouderkirk has carried out an extensive procedure during the last six months in a thorough and fair manner and reached a decision after listening to experts and insightful witnesses”.
They also believe that Angelina’s testimony “lacked credibility in many important areas” and that her objections and difficulties in reaching an agreement “would cause serious harm to the children, who will be further denied permanence and stability.”
Due to the fact that most of the case files are kept secret by the court, it is not clear what the current custody agreement between Pitt and Jolie is, although it is known that Angelina wanted sole custody while Brad sought joint custody.
Of the six children they have in common, the only one who is not subject to the custody decision is 19-year-old Maddox. The others, Pax, 17, Zahara, 16, Shiloh, 14 and twins Vivienne and Knox, 12, will have to submit to the legal agreement that their parents reach.
Jolie and Pitt were among Hollywood’s most prominent couples for 12 years. They had been married for two years when Jolie filed for divorce citing “Irreconcilable differences” and denounced the actor for mistreating his eldest son.