(dailymail.co.uk) - Madonna's lawyers are fighting to stop a collection of love letters and intimate photographs being made public at the same time as she tries to make her adoption of a Malawian baby permanent.
The 17 notes and seven Polaroid snaps she sent in the early 1990s to then boyfriend James Albright were recently sold to an investment company specialising in Madonna memorabilia.
The firm is now touting them around to the highest bidder and hoping to make more than ?100,000.
Some of the pictures, which the singer took of herself, show her naked in explicit poses. The collection also includes personal items such as underwear which Madonna apparently sent to Albright during their two-year relationship.
Although she repeatedly posed nude at the time for her controversial coffee-table book, Sex, she is understood to be devastated about the arrival of such items on the market - particularly at such a sensitive time. The head of Malawi's child welfare service is about to spend a week with Madonna and her family in London to assess whether they are fit to adopt baby David Banda permanently.
The singer and her husband Guy Ritchie are said to be "dreading" the imminent visit by Penston Kilembe, who will spend up to five days at the family's ?6.5million Marylebone house as part of a "home study".
James Albright served as Madonna's bodyguard from January to July 1992, after which he became romantically involved with her and remained so until 1994. The letters and notes, all of which come on "Madonna" headed notepaper, were sent by the singer at a time when she was professionally at her most controversial. She had just brought out her Sex book and was about to release a sadomasochisminspired album named Erotica.
The handwritten letters are signed either "Spanky", apparently a reference to her bedroom preferences at the time, or "Lola's Mum", which is understood to refer to the ambition that Madonna had back then to name her first child Lola. Others sign off with pink lipstick kiss marks.
A source at Marquee Capital, which is selling the items, claims that rather that being merely salacious, they actually give a fascinating insight into the singer and the workings of her mind at the time.
"It's not all about sex. Some of the notes and letters talk of her world falling apart, others talk of her feeling really low and down. She talks of Albright being the best looking guy in the world and that he does not open up enough to her. "These letters show us that at the height of her career, she was actually a very insecure woman."
But Madonna's lawyers insist that selling them would be an invasion of her privacy and a breach of her copyright. Albright now runs a Boston-based security firm which is thought to be in financial difficulty - thus forcing him to sell the memorabilia.
This is mainly said to be due to the failure of a ?500,000 lawsuit in 2002, in which he tried to sue a book publisher for wrongly suggesting he was gay. The judge ruled that being labelled gay, whether rightly or wrongly, did not constitute a defamation.