Mel B banned from Channel Nine
Former Spice Girl Melanie Brown is unable to work on Australia's Got Talent after a judge ruled that she is still locked into her contract with Seven.PT1M4S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-2i216 620 349 April 18, 2013
Spice Girl Melanie Brown will not appear on Channel Nine's Australia's Got Talent, with a judge ordering an injunction preventing her from working for any Australian network other than Seven remain in place.
Channel Seven took legal action after rival network Nine poached Brown as a judge for their talent show.
Melanie Brown: not allowed to work for the Nine Network. Photo: Sahlan Hayes
Seven argued Brown had breached her X Factor contract with them and was granted an injunction in the NSW Supreme Court to prevent the singer from working for other networks until the end of January next year.
"This matter concluded that Seven is entitled to injunctive relief," Justice David Hammerschlag said on Thursday.
During the hearing, Seven's head of production Brad Lyons said he first learned Brown would not be returning to The X Factor in January when her husband and agent Stephen Belafonte told him she was having custody issues that would prevent her from bringing her children to Australia.
The court heard that Brown had decided to pull out of The X-Factor because comedian Eddie Murphy - with whom she has one child - refused to sign a consent form which would have allowed the child to get an Australian visa.
Another father of one of her children also refused to allow the child to come to Australia, the court heard.
A lawyer from Seven's production department, Jane Oswald, said that Mr Belafonte had told her he "wasn't interested" in paying the costs of taking Mr Murphy to court.
"He [Mr Belafonte] said that unless [Channel Seven executive] Brad Lyons was willing to bank roll the case he wasn't interested in going to court to try and get Mr Murphy to sign the [consent] documents," Ms Oswald said.
Seven did not bankroll the case and the documents were not signed, leading Ms Brown to pull out of X-Factor's 2013 season.
Mr Lyons said he and Mr Belafonte had at first spoken amicably through a series of phone calls and emails about the possibility of another role for Brown in The X Factor, and the need to keep her departure under wraps.
Mr Belafonte told the Seven executive "buddy, we're Seven people through and through", the court heard.
He allegedly told Mr Lyons he would "absolutely" not reveal the celebrity's plans.
The costs hearing will be held at a later date.