Former Spice Girls singer Mel B has been ordered to undergo random testing for drug and alcohol use by a judge, as part of the custody arrangement for access to her daughter Madison.
The star, real name Melanie Brown, was accused in court papers during the hearing last Friday (August 31st) by a former childminder of putting her children at risk through her drinking. The claim was made by Russell Updegraff, who looked after Brown’s seven year old daughter Madison, whom she shares with now ex-husband Stephen Belafonte, and her other daughter Angel.
He alleged that Brown used to drink to the point that she would pass out, and that when she came round she would be argumentative. Updegraff also claimed that he used to go on alcohol runs for her, buying a dozen bottles of wine, two 12-packs of beer and two bottles of vodka at a time, which she would consume in under a week. Brown strenuously denied these claims.
Judge Mark Juhas, sitting at Los Angeles Superior Court on Tuesday (September 4th), ordered 43 year old Brown to submit to the random testing for a period of four months. In addition, the judge specified that neither Brown nor Belafonte can take drugs or drink alcohol less than eight hours before taking custody of Madison, or while they are with her.
“Today the court ordered that… they must choose a new custody evaluator by September 14th - both sides will submit names and the court will pick which evaluator to go with,” an insider told E! News. “After the court picks the evaluator then the evaluation will begin.”
“The court today did not take custody away from Mel nor did they give Stephen what he wanted. Things could change in terms of custody down the line once the custody evaluation is complete, there has to be a custody evaluation in order for the court to make new custody orders.”
The ruling came the same day that Brown was expected to appear a judge on the new season of ‘America’s Got Talent’, alongside Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum and Howie Mandel.