(Reuters) - The wife of News Corp Chief Executive Rupert Murdoch, Wendi Murdoch, has switched lawyers in a move signaling that their divorce proceedings could take an acrimonious turn, the New York Times reported on Monday.
Murdoch, 82, filed for divorce in June. He married the former Wendi Deng, 44, in 1999 in his third and her second marriage. They have two young daughters.
The newspaper said Deng has hired William Zabel, a New York trusts and estates lawyer who has represented several women in divorce cases involving wealthy businessmen, including Jane Beasley Welch, the ex-wife of former General Electric chief executive John Welch.
A spokesman for Deng, Christopher Giglio, confirmed the hiring of Zabel to the New York Times, but otherwise declined to comment.
Zabel's law firm Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP could not immediately be reached for comment by Reuters.
Deng had been represented by attorney Pamela Sloan, chair of the Family Law section of the New York State Bar Association.
(Reporting by Sakthi Prasad in Bangalore; editing by Jackie Frank)