August 15, 2008
Former 'James Bond' George Lazenby is accused by estranged wife Pam Shriver of being an abusive alcoholic who gave their toddlers beer and threatened to kill her in explosive new court papers.
The ex-tennis champion also claims Lazenby assaulted her in a drunken rage and often frightened their three young children with his temper.
In more damaging allegations, Shriver says the Australian actor once launched an anti-Semitic verbal attack against Israeli government officials in a Los Angeles restaurant.
And the court papers include copies of emotional emails a desperate Lazenby sent to Shriver promising to beat his battle with alcohol and begging to see her and their kids.
Shriver, 46, filed for divorce from 68-year-old Lazenby last week and was granted a temporary restraining order by a Los Angeles court.
The documents reveal she claims Lazenby, who made just one film as 007, has a history of domestic violence.
She says in the papers: 'Respondent has threatened to kill me if I seek custody of the children.
'Respondent twisted my ear (August 2007) and bruised my arms (June 2007).
'Respondent does not cooperate with me. He argues and fights with me in front of the children.'
Shriver claims Lazenby made a death threat when the couple, who wed in June 2002, were talking about their troubled marriage in November 2006.
She says: 'We were having a hard discussion about whether we could continue together under one rood.
'When the conversation turned to the kids, he said: 'If you take the kids, I will kill you'.
'He and I have discussed this horrible incident and he says it was just his Australian manner and some humour - however, the mood and tone was all serious and I was devastated.'
In a written declaration, Shriver says she believes Lazenby's 'severe anger management issues, alcoholism and poor parenting skills place our children at risk.'
She claims Lazenby's 'anger' effects children Georgie, four, and two-year-old twins Katie and Sammy 'mostly emotionally, however, sometimes physically.'
Shriver says the couple have different beliefs about what is best for their kids, with Lazenby objecting to them brushing their teeth, having inoculations and using sun block.
Her declaration claims: 'Throughout 2006 and 2007, I observed and objected to Respondent offering our children beer from beer bottles and ice from scotch glasses.'
She says she believes Lazenby's problems are 'severe and ongoing and that he needs treatment, not only for alcoholism, but also for anger management.'
Shriver details two incidents where Lazenby allegedly assaulted her during rows after he had been drinking.
She says while the couple were at Wimbledon in June 2007 Lazenby flew into a rage over their nannies' care of their children.
Shriver claims: 'Respondent grabbed my arms and twice shook me hard, squeezing my arms until bruising both of them.'
The ex-Grand Slam doubles champion says she fled with her children to her mother's home in America and communicated with Lazenby by email to urge him to seek help for his drinking and save their marriage.
But she alleges he assaulted her again during his six months of sobriety which apparently ended in January this year, twisting her right ear when he felt she was not listening to him.
Shriver also claims a drunk Lazenby made anti-Semitic comments in October 2002 at an LA restaurant.
She says after the couple was told secret service agents would be standing outside a private room to protect Israeli government officials dining inside, Lazenby 'became very loud and verbal about his negative opinions on Israel.'
She claims Lazenby said 'he believed the Israeli government were all 'murderers'' and alleges: 'He continued to make anti-Semitic comments.
Print-outs of the emails exchanged between Shriver and Lazenby after she left with the children are included in the papers.
In one of the first, Lazenby promises Shriver: 'If I have to choose between booze or the kids, no contest.
'Bring them home please.' In a later message, he asks: 'Can I see the kids today, it is so important to me, I am dying.' He adds: 'Of course I need professional help.'
Another message says: 'How did it get to this so fast, you must realize I was asleep on the booze or otherwise I would not have let the loves of my life get lost.' He also vows: 'I will give up drinking altogether, which wouldn't occur to me before.'
Lazenby writes in a later email: 'Also I am not an alcoholic? (SIC) I was drinking heavily under stress of our relationship and the way it was going.
'I have been off the booze for more than a month, I love the feelings.
'After being to lots of AA meetings I know I don't have the same problems as those guys and girls, yes I do need a wake up call now and then as we all do.'
Lazenby also denies being anti-Semitic in one email, writing: 'Live in a jewish part of the world so I am certain to come down on them once in a while, it doesn't mean I am anti.'
The ex-007, whose one Bond film was 'On Her Majesty's Secret Service' in 1969, is challenging the temporary restraining order and asking for joint legal and physical custody of the children.
He says in his written declaration: 'I have not abused Petitioner or our children.'
Lazenby also claims: 'She is a very competitive person - this is the cause of her success on the tennis court.
'Her actions seem to indicate that she is more interested in winning and controlling the situation than what is best for our children.
Lazenby's spokesman Michael Sands said last night: 'George will go to the end of the Earth for his kids and he is devastated by a lot of false accusations.'
He added: 'I am Jewish and I have never heard him make anti-Semitic comments.'
Sands revealed Lazenby will be hitting back at Shriver with his own allegations in further declarations next week.
The court has ordered Lazenby is not allowed to be alone with the children during his three times a week visits.
He was also told to surrender the children's Australian passports to Shriver.
The custody dispute will go before a Los Angeles Superior Court on August 25.