Halle Berry in Court Over Move to France
Judge Mark A. Juhas blocked off 17 days for the trial, which is expected to last nearly one month.
The issue at stake is the Oscar-winning actress's request to make the international move with 4-year-old Nahla, over father Aubry's vigorous objections. Berry is engaged to French actor Olivier Martinez.
The actress is expected to use her recent brushes with the paparazzi and a stalker as evidence for why she should be allowed to move out of the country.
According to TMZ, Andrew Deetz, the celebrity shutterbug who tangled with Berry when he took shots of Nahla outside the girl's school earlier this month, has been subpoenaed by Berry's lawyers and is expected to take the stand in the trial.
The gossip website is also reporting that Berry's lawyers have filed a declaration from her friend, actress Salma Hayek, about how France is a safer place for celebrities and their children because of the country's tougher paparazzi laws. Hayek, who is married to French billionaire François-Henri Pinault, has a 4-year-old daughter, Valentina.
Paparazzi in France are considered more respectful than their U.S.-based counterparts, and snaps of celebrity children are blurred to protect their privacy.
Before closing the courtroom to the public, the judge handled a few housekeeping details, including whether or not Berry's personal attorney of 20 years would be allowed to remain in court during the trial. The judge found that he was not essential to the proceedings and, thus, dismissed him from the courtroom.
The judge also stated that he didn't have the original child custody evaluation documents, though he did receive two letters from both parents regarding their concern over the evaluation.
Berry, 46, dated Aubry, a 35-year-old Canadian model, from 2005 to 2010. Earlier this year, the rancor between the former couple reached new heights, with Berry filing a restraining order against Aubry after he was accused of pushing their nanny while she was holding Nahla.
The Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services ultimately closed a child endangerment case against him.