Jolie put in the court papers requesting for the disqualification of the private judge from the case after her lawyer Samantha Bley DeJean found out that Judge John W. Ouderkirk had financial and personal relations with Pitt’s attorney Anne C. Kiley and Lance Spiegel. This, the filing said, was their “little secret”.
Pitt and Jolie haven't had a complete divorce — they are bifurcated, which means that even though they have been divorced legally, the custody of the kids is yet to be decided by the court, along with all the financial matters that concern the two.
The couple has six children.
According to Page Six, a source said: “Angelina isn’t trying to delay this process. In fact, the court papers state that she wants to get this issue with the judge resolved so there are no further delays.”
Jolie filed the papers in the Los Angeles Superior Court, and her filing states that her counsel conducted their own inquiry to find out the “missing disclosures” of the “professional relationship between judge and Pitt’s counsel.”
According to the court filing, the findings were made on the “own initiative” of Jolie’s attorney — matters that “should have been disclosed long ago.”
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Jolie’s legal team for the divorce case was told that between the years 2012 and 2013, Judge Ouderkirk “had heard a few cases involving Pitt’s counsel, but that in recent years he had only undertaken one or two cases that settled without his involvement.
“Hidden was the fact that Judge Ouderkirk’s relationship with Respondent’s counsel had continued and expanded into 2020.”
The legal papers disclosed that when Judge Ouderkirk was asked the reasons behind not disclosing the association by Jolie’s legal team, he agreed that “he had a duty to do so” and that him failing to oblige with the same was an “error.”
The court paper further stated: “No one thought to let Jolie know. Instead, it was a little secret between Judge Ouderkirk and Pitt’s counsel.” And, “as is often true, the cover-up (or perceived cover-up) drives home the concern that something untoward is happening,” the court papers state.
Now, there’s a demand from Jolie’s end on the disqualification of the private judge involved in the case as they believe it “is the required remedy for the private judge’s failure to disclose ongoing financial and professional relationships with respondent’s counsel which create at least a doubt about impartiality.”
Now, the office of Judge Ouderkirk has ten days to respond to the court filing put forward by Jolie’s legal team.
According to Page Six, Jolie’s attorney, Samantha Bley DeJean, said: “As is set forth in the filing, all my client is asking for is a fair trial based on facts, with no special favors extended to either side. The only way litigants can trust the process is for everyone involved to ensure that there is transparency and impartiality.”