Supermodel Linda Evangelista has sensationally accused Salma Hayek's fashion mogul husband of advising her to have an abortion after she fell pregnant with his child.
The former runway beauty made the headline-grabbing claim in New York's Manhattan Family Court on Thursday (03May12) as the first day of her child support trial with Francois-Henri Pinault got underway.
Evangelista turned to the legal system last year (11) when she filed papers requesting a massive $46,000 (£28,750)-a-month to support her five-year-old son Augustin James, who was conceived while Pinault was briefly separated from Hayek.
Pinault took the stand soon after proceedings got underway and he found himself immediately under attack from the model's lawyer, William Beslow, who chastised Pinault for turning his back on his responsibilities.
Beslow told the court the French billionaire had "suggested she terminate the pregnancy" as soon as Evangelista discovered she was expecting, while Pinault admitted he was "not involved in the decision" to keep the child, although he would "recognise the baby" as his own.
Beslow explained to the court that Evangelista was happy to bring up her son on her own "since he made it perfectly clear he had no wish to do so", but her income situation changed when her lucrative make-up contract with L'Oreal came to an end in 2010.
Pinault's attorney branded the child support figure "ridiculous" and accused Evangelista, who did not make eye contact with her ex throughout the hearing, of trying to "bootstrap herself into disguised alimony" - a claim her lawyer denied.
Beslow countered, "She is not looking to piggyback her lifestyle on Mr. Pinault. She is looking to continue the lifestyle that Augie's had."
Evangelista claims she needs the huge cash sum to cover security costs for around-the-clock armed chauffeurs and a full-time nanny.
Pinault reunited with actress Hayek and they became parents to daughter Valentina in 2007. They wed in 2009.
The trial continues.