The controversial saga of Mel B's expensive divorce continues. This is an unpleasant ride with stories of a blackmail sex tape, physical abuse, and financial exploitation.
Once again, Stephen Belafonte claims that he never abused Mel. But he now argues that he can account for her history of injuries.
Because he claims that she's a drug addict who injured herself.
This ugly divorce is getting even uglier, folks.
TMZ reports that Belafonte accuses Mel B of being a drug addict and an alcoholic.
And he's reportedly claiming that these alleged substance abuse issues are the real culprits behind her history of troubling injuries.
He claims that she would walk into doors and overdose, resulting in bruising and hospital visits.
He says that she would try to cover for it by claiming domestic violence.
Finally, at the same time as he's making these arguments, he's lobbying for visitation with his stepdaughter.
Several years ago, fans noticed bruising on Mel B's body when she appeared on television.
Given the locations of the bruises, many fans recognized them as what they'd expect from a victim of domestic violence. They voiced their concerns.
Mel B replied that Belafonte would never hit her.
That's what anyone would say if they're not be abused. Of course, it's also exactly what you'd expect to hear from someone who's being abused by their partner but trying to make it work.
Now, however, the couple is embroiled in an ugly divorce, and Mel B had admitted that she was a victim of his alleged physical abuse for years.
She also says that he used his influence over her to force her to do a number of things, such as recording a threesome sex tape and making financial investments as he saw fit, whittling away at her fortune.
Belafonte has filed legal papers in an attempt to lobby for visitation with his stepdaughter, Angel.
Angel's biological father is Eddie Murphy, but Angel has been with Belafonte for almost all of her life.
Belafonte claims that Mel B has "concocted" these accusations of abuse in an effort to turn Angel against him.
So now, on top if his demands for spousal support which Mel B dismisses as astronomical, Belafonte is demanding time with his stepdaughter.
And he says that all of Mel B's injuries can be explained by her alleged substance abuse.
Belafonte refers to a 2014 incident in which he allegedly bashed Mel B's head against a door.
He says that what actually happened is that Mel B overdosed and was rushed to the hospital.
The bruises and other injuries were then, in his narrative, the results of her IV needles and injuries that she somehow sustained at the hands of an EKG machine.
Out of embarrassment or some other unknown motive, she then tried to cover for the incident by claiming that he had abused her.
At least, that's Belafonte's version of events.
He also says that she will be so day-drunk that she walks into walls or will squat down and urinate on the couch in front of their children.
Mel B has claimed, on top of his alleged abuse of her, that he showed the children videos of Daesh beheading prisoners in captured cities.
He claims that this is untrue, and that he has never even searched for these videos.
It looks like they're both making some claims that might be backed or refuted by evidence, such as testimony from hospital employees and perhaps some computer forensics experts.
Some evidence might be more ambiguous.
Mel B says she can prove that Belafonte made blackmail tapes. Belafonte says that his recordings prove that he didn't force her into the three-way relationship because they show her as a willing participant.
This whole thing is a mess.
We can all hope that the divorce settlement is a just one and that, whatever happens, the children have the best possible outcome.