Former Spice Girls star, Mel B, 42, and her estranged husband have been involved in legal battles since their separation in March, with Belafonte demanding an exorbitant amount of money in maintenance and spousal support. They are also battling for custody of their child.
Mel’s financial situation was laid bare in the courts this past week. She attended court in Los Angeles on Friday for the first time and it was revealed that there was next to nothing left of her multi-million pounds fortune due to her “extravagant” lifestyle. The court heard that Mel has only £961 left in one of her company accounts.
A source told the Mirror: “Mel is an international superstar, still working as a judge on America’s Got Talent, but she only has a small amount of money in the bank, according to Companies House. People may be very surprised.”
Mel also owns 20% of Spice Girls Limited which held £109,987 as of August 31, 2016 while her former bandmates own the rest. She also owns 16% of Octopus Direct along with the other Spice Girls and music mogul Simon Fuller.
Mel B and Belafonte both have outstanding tax debts after living exorbitant lifestyles, Los Angeles Superior Court was told. Belafonte claims he has zero income and is asking for backdated wages of around £90,000, an estimated £1,729 in perks, around £54,000 in spousal support and more than £150,000 to pay for his ongoing legal costs. His lawyer, Grace Jamra, asked Judge Lawrence Riff to order the sale of their Los Angeles home if necessary. It is currently on the market for just over £6 million.
Grace Jamra said: “Their lifestyle was extravagant and affluent. She wiped out all her Spice Girls money, approximately $ 50 million (£38 million) if not more.”
Jacalyn Davis, representing Mel, spoke of the couple’s tax problems and disclosed that they never had money at the end of the year to pay their taxes because they spent ore than they were earning. As Judge Riff concluded the spousal support hearing, he told the former couple he was “sorry they engaged in such a rancorous fight” . He postponed his decision on whether Stephen will be granted a total of $ 118,000 (£90,000) in spousal support – backdated to March. Judge Riff’s decision will be made known on Wednesday.
The court hearing had been a bad-tempered one and neither Mel nor Belafonte spoke all through the lengthy hearing. They also declined to comment afterwards. Mel B and Stephen Belafonte’s lawyers will return to LA’s Stanley Mosk courthouse on Wednesday to collect an order detailing the judge’s decision.