SPICY BATTLE LOOMS

Mel B is facing a tough fight with ex-husband Jimmy Gulzar over custody of their daughter Pheonix Chi...

SPICE GIRL MEL B and her estranged husband JIMMY GULZAR have arrived at the LONDON HIGH COURT this morning (18 October) for a hearing, believed to be over custody of their

20-month-old daughter PHOENIX CHI.

Smiling Mel looked very different from her stage image – with her wild

hair severely tied back and wearing a white T-shirt under a

tight-fitting brown trouser suit.

She arrived through the back entrance of the Royal Courts of Justice

in The Strand, accompanied by actor boyfriend Max Beesley, before

retiring to a private consultation room with her lawyers.

The star has flown in specially from Japan where she has been

promoting the forthcoming Spice Girls album, ‘Forever’.

Gulzar, who was also dressed for court in a navy overcoat over a smart

suit, went to a room on another floor of the building for confidential

discussions with his legal team.

The two sides did not speak to each other as they briefly occupied the

same corridor outside the courtroom where Mr Justice Coleridge will

hear their case in private.

Neither commented to waiting reporters as they arrived at court.

The pair, who married in September 1998 in a glitzy ceremony at their

Buckinghamshire mansion, are expected to tie up a divorce deal in the

next few weeks after splitting at the start of the year.

Mel, whose debut solo album ‘Hot’ debuted in the charts at a

disappointing 28, met dancer Gulzarduring the Spice Girls world tour

in 1998.

Gulzar moved out of the house at the start of this year after a major

bust-up.