Music icon Madonna has hit back at claims that she and hubby Guy Ritchie used their star status to speed up the adoption of Malawian toddler David Banda.
The couple had been accused of using their status to get round Malawian adoption laws in their bid to adopt baby David, including funding Malawi’s chief welfare officer’s trip to the UK to determine whether or not the couple were fit parents to the toddler.
Now, in a statement, Madonna's spokeswoman Liz Rosenberg has hit back at the claims, and said that the adoption was going according to plans set out nearly a year ago.
"The plans to finalise the adoption of Madonna and Guy Ritchie's son David are proceeding as outlined almost a year ago, the day the Malawian Government granted them their 'interim' adoption," the Daily Mail quoted Rosenberg, as saying.
"There has been absolutely no interference with Government Officials or use of Madonna's 'celebrity' to speed up this adoption as reported.
"All appropriate legal requirements are being followed, including a home visit".
"Madonna and her entire family look forward to being granted the final adoption early next year - 18 months following the original interim adoption order," she added.
Baby David has been living with Madonna and Ritchie ever since October 2006 after being placed in an orphanage by his father Yohane Banda following the death of his mother.
Madonna met baby David while in Malawi to launch a project to help the country's two million Aids orphans.