A spokesman for Mel Gibson's ex-girlfriend has lashed out at the actor's legal team - accusing his lawyers of creating false rumors about the Russian singer in order to "vilify" her during the pair's custody battle.
The "Braveheart" star's reputation has been badly damaged following the release of several tape recordings which purportedly feature Gibson hurling abuse and vile threats at Oksana Grigorieva during phone calls.
The furore around the tapes intensified after Grigorieva - the mother of Gibson's young daughter Lucia - claimed the actor/director had knocked out her teeth during a bust-up, and reportedly used the dental evidence as part of her custody case against Gibson in a hearing last week. A picture showing the singer with her two front teeth broken was released to the media on Friday, July 16.
Grigorieva subsequently came under fire after it was alleged she tried to extort $10 million from her former lover to keep the tapes private. She was further scrutinized after an expert claimed Grigorieva's injuries were self-inflicted.
Now her spokesman, Stephen Jaffe, has accused Gibson's camp of launching a smear campaign and points out that Gibson's legal team has yet to deny the voice on the recording's belongs to the star. He tells TMZ.com, "While Mr. Gibson's camp has floated a variety of false claims in the press to try to distract the public from the true facts at hand, it is telling that his camp has not once denied that it is Mr. Gibson's voice on the published recordings."
"It is common in such cases for those who perpetrate domestic violence to vilify the victim of that domestic violence. One would hope that those who are close to Mr. Gibson would take a more constructive approach."