Donald Trump Jr's wife Vanessa files for divorce

'After 12 years of marriage, we have decided to go our separate ways,' the couple says

Emily Shugerman
New York
Thursday 15 March 2018 23:25 GMT
Donald Trump Jr defends meeting with Russian lawyer

Donald Trump's eldest son is getting a divorce.

Vanessa Haydon Trump filed paperwork seeking an uncontested divorce from Donald Trump Jr on Thursday. The two have been married since 2005 and have five children together.

“After 12 years of marriage, we have decided to go our separate ways," the couple said in a statement. "We will always have tremendous respect for each other and our families. We have five beautiful children together and they remain our top priority. We ask for your privacy during this time.”

The day before, New York gossip outlet Page Six reported Mr and Ms Trump were headed for a split, noting that they had been living "separate lives" of late. Two sources told the paper that Mr Trump “appears to have changed recently, and friends are concerned about him".

The pair recently made headlines when a package of white powder was mailed to their residence in New York City. Ms Trump, who was the first to open the package, was rushed to the hospital as a precaution. The contents were later deemed nonhazardous.

The couple first met in 2003, when Donald Trump spied the future Ms Trump – then Vanessa Haydon – at a fashion show. The pair engaged in awkward conversation and didn't hit it off right away, Ms Trump later told the New York Times. It wasn't until six weeks later, when a mutual friend introduced them at a birthday party, that the sparks flew.

The couple were married in 2005 at the elder Mr Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort – the same place he married his wife, Melania, that same year.

Life became more complicated for the pair after Mr Trump's father was sworn in last year. To avoid conflicts of interest, Donald Trump left control of his flagship company – the Trump Organisation – to his two sons. The younger Mr Trump now leads the organisation with his brother, Eric.

And while he is supposed to remain separate from the White House as an employee of the Trump Organisation, Mr Trump has nevertheless found himself embroiled in a number of his father's political scandals.

This summer, for instance, the New York Times reported that Mr Trump had arranged a meeting with Russian sources who promised to provide "dirt" on Hillary Clinton during his father's campaign.

Mr Trump has said the meeting was innocent, and denied ever colluding with a foreign government.

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