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Besotted Roma moves in with married actor lover; COUPLE TO WED AFTER DIVORCE.

Byline: JULIAN BROUWER in New York

IRISH beauty Roma Downey has moved one step nearer the altar by officially moving in with her longtime lover.

Derry-born Downey, 39, who stars in hit US series Touched By an Angel, sparked a scandal by beginning her affair with married actor Michael Nouri.

Then the couple briefly broke up after devout Roman Catholic Roma started having doubts about the relationship.

But now - with his divorce nearly through - wedding bells could finally be ringing for Roma and Nouri, who is legally separated from wheelchair bound wife Vicki Light.

The lovers, who originally met when Nouri appeared as a guest star on Touched By an Angel, let the news slip recently when they appeared together at a charity gala held in Beverly Hills.

"We're not just here on a date," Nouri told a friend. "This is serious stuff - we're in love and living together."

Roma and Flashdance star Nouri are living with Roma's six-year-old daughter Reilly Marie at the actress's luxury home in Salt Lake City, Utah - only a few miles down the road from the film set of the popular CBS show.

"Roma has this lovely six-bedroom house with beautiful gardens in the foothills of the Wasatch Mountains," a pal said. "She and Michael love it there."

An eyewitness who saw the pair

together at the Beverly Hills bash added: "Roma was stunning and they both looked so happy together."

Things certainly look rosier than they did two and a half years ago when friends feared the stress of the affair was affecting Roma's health.

After she lost over a stone in weight, a worried friend revealed: "Roma can hardly eat and it seems like she can't even concentrate on work anymore. She desperately wants to marry Michael and he wants to be with her too. But he's too loyal to Vicki.

"When she gets to work it often looks like she's been crying."

Bizarrely, notorious womaniser Nouri, who has had relationships with a string of beautiful women, was given carte blanche to woo Roma by his wife.

Vicki, who suffers from MS, said at the time: "Michael's told me about his relationship with Roma - in fact he tells me about all the women he sees. He has my blessing to have a normal sex life."

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IN LOVE: Roma and Michael Nouri
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Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Nov 10, 2002
Words:390
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