Brad Pitt has denied claims he sued Angelina Jolie because she did not agree to a non-disclosure agreement.
Earlier this week, Brad, 59, sued his former wife Angelina, 47, over the “secret” sale of her share in their Chateau Miraval wine business to Tenute del Mondo, a subsidiary of Stoli Group, after claiming they had a “mutual and binding commitment” to never sell their part of the business without the other’s permission.
While a source close to Angelina alleged to PEOPLE that Brad took legal action because Angelina did not agree to a NDA to stop her speaking out about previous domestic abuse claims, this has been denied by Brad’s supporters.
A source close to Brad told the publication: “There was a non-disparagement clause in the contract, but that is totally standard to business transactions like this.”
“Brad requested a mutual NDA and non-disparagement strictly related to Miraval over concerns around sensitive financial information and protecting the brand, which is standard with these types of transactions. It had nothing to do with the divorce or the children.”
Brad’s lawyer, Anne Kiley of Elkins Kalt Weintraub Reuben Gartside LLP, added to PEOPLE: “Brad has owned everything he’s responsible for from day one, unlike Angelina, and he’s not going to own anything further. He’s been through every agency and professional she’s thrown at him, two court hearings and we refer to the findings.”
According to court documents filed in Los Angeles this week and obtained by DailyMail.com, Brad claims he only discovered Angelina had “secretly” sold her half of the company to a “Russian oligarch” when a press release issued in 2021 announced he had new business partners.
The documents argued: “As will be demonstrated at trial, Jolie’s actions were unlawful, severely and intentionally damaging Pitt and unjustly enriching herself.”
In his revised complaint, the ‘Bullet Train’ actor insisted he had first refusal on his ex-wife’s share of the winery, which is situated in the South of France, and by selling to a company ultimately owned by Uri Shefler, Brad argued the brand became linked to Russia, its homophobic laws and the war against Ukraine, potentially tarnishing Chateau Miraval’s name.
The documents added: “In the summer of 2021, amid a heated child custody dispute with Pitt, Jolie terminated those discussions and secretly purported to sell a 50% stake in the family home and family business to Tenute del Mondo.
“Tenute del Mondo is part of the Russia-affiliated spirits conglomerate Stoli Group, which is owned and controlled by billionaire Yuri Shefler. Shefler, who has been designated as an ‘oligarch in the Russian Federation’ by the U.S. Treasury Department, had previously sought to buy Miraval, and Pitt had turned him down.
“Pitt learned of Jolie’s putative sale to Stoli by way of a press release announcing that Stoli was ‘thrilled to have a position alongside Brad Pitt as curators’ of Miraval rosé.
“That was by design: Jolie collaborated in secret with Shefler and his associates to pursue and then consummate the purported sale, ensuring that Pitt would be kept in the dark as Stoli and Jolie knowingly violated Pitt’s and Mondo Bongo’s contractual rights and forced a stranger into Pitt’s family home.”
In her own counterclaim, Angelina accused Brad of trying to force her into selling to his Mondo Bongo company on “unreasonable terms” and launching a smear campaign that Shefler was “an ally of Vladimir Putin”, as well as alleging he hid assets and squandered the company’s funds on vanity projects including a swimming pool and a staircase that was rebuilt four times.