(AFP) – Feb 13, 2008
LONDON (AFP) — Paul McCartney's estranged wife Heather Mills will quit Britain once their divorce battle is completed, her father predicted Wednesday as their High Court showdown continued for a third day.
Press reports suggested that the pair might be near to an agreement at the London hearings, expected to last five days. They are the last chance to reach an accord without going to a public hearing in the high-profile split.
Neither Beatles legend McCartney, 65, nor former model turned campaigner Mills, 40, have commented on the proceedings, which are being held behind closed doors.
But Mark Mills, 66, told reporters he thought his daughter would move to either the United States or France, along with the couple's four-year-old daughter Beatrice.
The ex-model has consistently complained of her treatment by the tabloid press.
"She won't stay in this country. She knows everybody hates her and she does not care," Mark Mills said.
"I think she's very low at the moment and would leap at the chance to get away from it all and take her daughter Bea with her.
"I think she'll go abroad and then just slowly fade away into obscurity."
After dismissing her legal team, Heather Mills is thought to be representing herself in court.
Her father said doing that took courage, but feared she would be "torn to shreds" by McCartney's lawyers.
The former Beatle's legal team, led by Nicholas Mostyn, includes Fiona Shackleton, who acted for Prince Charles in his divorce from Diana, princess of Wales.
Sandra Sinclair of law firm SAS Daniels said Britain was the best jurisdiction in the world for wives seeking a divorce settlement but noted that Mills has no background in law.
"She must be mad to do it herself. She will be up against one of the finest legal teams in the world," she said.
McCartney and Mills were last in court in October but failed to agree a financial settlement in what is claimed could be one of the costliest divorces in British legal history.
If they fail to agree a private accord this week, the case will be heard in public.
The deal could be the highest divorce settlement in Britain, outstripping the 48 million pounds businessman John Charman was told to pay his former wife last year.
McCartney is estimated to be worth 825 million pounds, but last year's Sunday Times Rich List -- which describes itself as the definitive guide to wealth -- made a 100-million-pound allowance for a possible divorce settlement.
The musician married Mills in 2002, four years after his first wife, Linda, died from breast cancer.
They announced an "amicable" split in May 2006, but their dealings since have been anything but friendly.
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