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Guy Fieri

Dragged Into NASTY Custody Dispute

7/7/2011 5:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Famous chef Guy Fieri -- the host of NBC's "Minute to Win It" -- is embroiled in a very bitter custody war ... all because he tried to do the right thing for his nephew after his sister passed away.

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The whole ordeal started when Guy's sister Morgan died of cancer back in February -- landing her 11-year old son, Jules, square in the middle of a custody battle between Morgan's parents and the boy's father.

According to a petition for guardianship -- filed by Jules' grandparents -- they claimed the father, Dain Pape, should not get custody because he is "living out of his motor home," and has no income.

But last week , a Marin County judge sided with Pape ... ruling he should have custody -- and the grandparents should hand over Jules.

But since then Pape tells us ... Jules has been vacationing with his uncle Guy on a remote lake in Northern California -- with NO phone service -- and as a result he's been unable to take custody.

Pape says he hasn't driven to the lake because he wants to avoid a confrontation with the family. He simply wants the grandparents to comply with the court order.

We reached out to Guy's reps, but so far ... no response.



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