Rupert Murdoch to Divorce Third Wife Wendi Deng

06/13/2013 at 01:40 PM EDT

Rupert Murdoch Divorces Wendi Deng
Wendi Deng and Rupert Murdoch
Marion Curtis/Startraks
Rupert Murdoch filed for divorce from his wife Wendi Deng in New York State Supreme Court on Thursday, his media company News America confirms.

The couple, who were married in 1999, have two daughters together. This will be Murdoch's third marriage to end in divorce, and Deng's second.

It was reported that Murdoch's split from second wife Anna, in 1999, cost him $1.7 billion, one of the largest marriage settlements on record. According to Forbes, his current net worth is $11.2 billion.

Murdoch is 82. Deng is 44. Their separation was first reported by Deadline.com.



In 2011, Deng rose to her husband's defense by smacking a protestor who threw a shaving-cream pie at him during Murdoch's hearing before British parliament. Murdoch was being questioned at the time about his newspapers' practice of phone-hacking.

Deng, a Yale graduate who was born in China, met Murdoch while working as an intern at Star TV, part of News Corp., in 1996. "I had heard of him before but never seen him," Deng told the China Daily in 2008. "My boss assigned me to introduce the Chinese market to him. He was very interested in Chinese culture and we talked a lot."

The couple and their two daughters Grace, now 11, and Chloe, 9, lived in a $44 million Fifth Avenue penthouse previously owned by Laurance S. Rockefeller. They also had homes in Los Angeles; London; Canberra, Australia; Carmel, Calif.; and Centre Island, N.Y.

Deng was 18 when she met her first husband, Jake Cherry, 48, who sponsored her on a study-abroad program in California. She lived with Cherry and his wife after meeting the couple in Hong Kong. After Jake and Joyce split up, she was married to Cherry for about three years.

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