Arnold Schwarzenegger’s jilted wife, Maria Shriver could land £155m from her husband in showbiz’s biggest divorce settlement.
Shriver, the mother of four of Arnie’s children, is said to be just days away from securing a divorce.
Schwarzenegger, 63, a Hollywood action hero, has a vast property portfolio including an entire shopping mall, plus shares in Coca-Cola and Starbucks – and an £8m home in Los Angeles.
The Terminator star’s wealth has been estimated at £310m and Shriver, 55, could be entitled to half of it.
It would dwarf the £100m basketball star Michael Jordan paid ex Juanita Vanoy in 2007 – the current celebrity record. And it is more than twice the £65m Tiger Woods is said to have given Elin Nordegren in their split after he was found out as a serial philanderer.
Shriver has apparently hired a private eye to probe Arnie’s finances. As well as looking into earnings over his entire acting career, the investigator will also be examining how much money Schwarzenegger lavished on his illegitimate family – with the possibility that Miss Shriver could claw it all back.
It is thought that the couple signed a pre-nuptial agreement but Shriver may challenge it in the light of her husband’s infidelity. A niece of former US president John F. Kennedy, she is said to have retained divorce specialist Laura Wasser to oversee matters. Her previous clients include
Angelina Jolie, Britney Spears and Stevie Wonder.
A source said: “It’s not a matter of if Maria will file for divorce, but when. Maria is leaving no stone unturned.
“Maria needs and wants to know exactly what she is dealing with. The investigator will likely look into the claims that he fathered multiple children outside their marriage.
“Maria has heard the rumours and she wants to find out one way or another if those claims are true.”
Schwarzenegger, 64, announced on May 8 that he and Miss Shriver, 55, were separating after 25 years of marriage. Days later he was forced to issue a grovelling apology when it emerged he had fathered a child with Mildred ‘Patty’ Baena, who served as the couple’s housekeeper for 20 years. The son is now 13.
Schwarzenegger is said to have financially supported his illegitimate son from the beginning and lavished gifts upon him.
But according to divorce experts any money that he spent on his mistress would be added back to the pot to be split with Miss Shriver.
The ex-husband of Miss Baena has said he feels betrayed by the former governor.
In an interview broadcast on the TV show Entertainment Tonight, Rogelio Baena said he learned last week he was not the boy’s biological father. He says he will always regard the boy as his own.
The programme also broadcast a video of Miss Shriver at a family celebration saying she was proud of Miss Baena for being a hard-working single mother.