Phil Collins' Ex Settles Divorce with Second Husband: 'We Both Desire to Put This Chapter of Our Lives Behind Us'
After 10 years of marriage to investment banker Charles Fouad Mejjati, the duo came to a divorce agreement on Friday
Phil Collins‘ ex-wife and current girlfriend, Orianne Collins, has settled her bitter divorce with her wealthy second husband.
After 10 years of marriage to investment banker Charles Fouad Mejjati, the duo came to a divorce agreement on Friday.
“We have amicably resolved our disputes in the best interest of our family and desire to move forward in a peaceful manner and to otherwise jointly raise our son,” she said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE. “We both desire to put this chapter of our lives behind us and for others to respect our desire for privacy.”
They share 6-year-old son Andrea.
In February 2016 court documents obtained by PEOPLE, Orianne, 43, claimed Mejjati fraudulently coerced her into signing a marital settlement agreement and giving him the Miami Beach mansion the couple called home.
Miami-Dade County property records reveal Orianne paid $8.4 million for the residence in 2012, one year after she married the 46-year-old banker and four years after her $46.68 million divorce from Collins – the biggest in British legal history at the time.
Then, in June 2015, Mejjati purchased the home from Orianne for just $100, sales information shows. But Orianne’s filing states “no quit claim deed was, to the wife’s knowledge, ever presented to the wife” and she didn’t agree to the sale.
According to her divorce petition, Orianne claims she was attempting to recover from an unsuccessful spinal and neck surgery that left her partially paralyzed and unable to walk when Mejjati “embarked on a campaign” to intimidate her into signing the marital settlement agreement. (She has since regained movement and is able to walk with the help of a cane.)
While Orianne was under the influence of pain killers prescribed to treat her “constant extreme pain,” Mejjati allegedly threatened to make false statements about Orianne that would cause “social embarrassment” and the loss of custody of their son, her court documents claim.
The jewelry designer also alleges the agreement is “unfair on its face, and is unconscionable” since the terms would give Mejjati the “majority of the marital assets” in addition to half of her “premarital, non-marital residence located in Switzerland with a very substantial value.”
Orianne is asking the court to set aside the agreement (which she claims “has not been adopted by any court order”), nullify the deed, dissolve the marriage, determine custody of their son and child support and distribute their assets.
In the midst of her legal battle, Orianne and Phil, 65, clarified their relationship status in an interview with PEOPLE. “Yes, we are back together!” the musician shared at a press conference for their Little Dreams Foundation in Miami. The couple share sons Nicholas, 14, and Matthew, 11.
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The relationship is mentioned in Mejjati’s motion, as he claims Orianne “abandoned” their marriage and “resumed her relationship” with Phil in 2014. Still, Mejjati says he assisted the couple “in locating and securing the purchase” of Phil’s Miami Beach home and “cared for the three parties’ minor children while overseeing” a renovation of the new mansion as Orianne and Phil “vacationed on their yacht in the Mediterranean” last August.
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Speaking to PEOPLE, Phil explained that his reconciliation with Orianne “wasn’t something we wanted to make a song and dance about.”
The musician continued, “But obviously when you have children, there’s two ways you can go. You can go the nasty way or you can go the nice way, and we always went the nice way … and we realized we missed each other.”
- With reporting by GILLIAN TELLING and NICK MASLOW