The wife of actor Mel Gibson has filed for divorce after 28 years of marriage to the Braveheart star.

Robyn Gibson cited irreconcilable differences as the cause of the separation and could be in line for one of the biggest divorce settlements in Hollywood history.

Though it has been reported that Mrs Gibson's divorce suit comes after her husband was pictured on a Costa Rican beach with an unidentified brunette, it is believed the couple have been officially separated for three years.

Robyn Gibson, 53, cited the date of the couple's separation as "to be determined" but according to a response filed by her director husband's lawyer, the couple were separated on August 26th 2006 - a month after the star's arrest for drink-driving in which he made anti-Semitic remarks.

The couple have since released a brief joint statement concerning their divorce, saying: "Throughout our marriage and separation we have always strived to maintain the privacy and integrity of our family and will continue to do so."

They are parents to nine-year-old Thomas - of whom they are seeking joint custody - as well as six older children; Milo, 19, Louis, 21, William, 24, twins Edward and Christian, 26, and Hannah, 28.

The divorce could involve a colossal financial settlement, with Gibson's wealth believed to surpass that of the majority of his contemporaries.

He owns properties in Malibu, Australia, Fiji and Costa Rica, a £28 million church in California, and made over £270 million in two years after a £25 million personal investment in his 2004 film The Passion Of The Christ.

14/04/2009 10:04:02