Alleged Facebook Bigamist's Defense: Never Married to First Wife

Woman Discovers Husbands Second Life - and Wife - on Facebook

Many people cheat on their spouses, but one woman claims her husband actually married another woman behind her back.

Lynn and John France of Cleveland allegedly were married in Italy in 2005. They had two children together and, at least for Lynn, everything seemed fine until the fall of 2008, when she said she suspected her husband was having an affair.

But it wasn't until she looked on Facebook that she discovered her husband's alleged mistress actually was his wife, she told She has accused her husband of bigamy, but John France's lawyer told Lynn France and the man she thought was her husband never actually were legally married.

"These people were under the impression that they got married in Italy," John France's lawyer, Gary Williams of Tampa, Fla., told "This was not a lawful marriage according to the Italian government."

Lynn France's attorneys disagree.

"It's been an allegation that's been thrown about, but no specifics have ever been brought forward to substantiate this allegation," Jonathan Rich, an attorney for Lynn France, told

"There is a certificate that is issued by the foreign country that verifies the marriage certificate of the foreign country," he said.

Rich said he obtained the document that he called an apostille during an earlier court proceeding between the couple.

Click here to see the apostille.

Williams refused to comment on the validity of the apostille.

"If you're legally married in another country, then you're legally married in America," Rich said.

If it turns out John France isn't married to Lynn France, Zashin said, he may face other problems.

"That's a real problem for him," Zashin said, "because either he's a bigamist or he's violated a whole slew of other laws."

Whether or not Lynn and John France ever were married is only one part of the messy relationship that involves John France's alleged other wife, Amanda Weisal France, and Lynn and John France's two young children.

Lynn France has filed for divorce in Ohio, but the case has been dismissed and moved to Florida, where John and Amanda France live.

John France also has filed a paternity action in an attempt to gain at least partial custody of the children.

John and Lynn France returned from their 2005 wedding on the Amalfi coast of Italy to start a life together in Cleveland, and everything seemed to be going well, according to Lynn France. She gave birth to their first son in 2006 and their second in June 2008.

A few months later, however, she said she started to grow suspicious that the man she believed was her husband had been unfaithful.

Once, when he called saying he was in China on business, she said she noticed his passport was still at home. She claimed he tried to cover his tracks upon his return.

"He had souvenirs for all of us, like he was there," Lynn France told "He probably got them in Chinatown."

After that, she said she discovered more and more about John France's relationship with the other woman. Finally, she said, she followed him to a hotel where she claims to have found John and Amanda France together.

Lynn France said she told Amanda France that John France was her husband but that Amanda France brushed it off.

"She said, 'Well, we're engaged,'" Lynn France said. "It was just kind of heartbreaking."

Zashin, one of Lynn France's attorneys, said it is fairly common for people in affairs to get engaged.

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