London: Parminder Nagra’s estranged husband James Stenson has accused the actress of hiding her fortune, and is pursuing her through the courts to claim his share.
Photographer Stenson has reportedly filed a lawsuit claiming damages of 323,000 pounds and half the value of the three houses he says they bought together, the Daily Mail reported.
One of the properties, a four-bedroom 2,484-sq ft house in the up market suburb of Franklin Hills in Los Angeles, was purchased for 561,000 pounds in September 2007.
Nagra – the first British Indian actress to make it big in Hollywood – put the house back on the market two years later for nearly 900,000 pounds.
The couple’s main residence was a 1,845-sq ft house in the trendy Laurel Canyon area of LA, which Nagra bought for 660,000 pounds in 2004.
Nagra, who starred opposite Keira Knightley in the 2002 British film, ‘Bend it like Beckham,’ is also thought to own a property in the Venice Beach area of the city.
Stenson alleges that before their marriage in 2009, the couple was “life partners” for six years – during which time they promised to share their combined wealth.
According to the papers obtained by celebrity website TMZ.com, Stenson claims the three homes were all purchased through a “shell” corporation set up in his wife’s name.
He claims that when the 36-year-old star, then his girlfriend, landed the role of Dr Neela Rasgotra in the long-running US hospital drama ‘ER’, he agreed to give up his photographer’s job to manage the couple’s life in America.
At the time, Stenson, who lives in Los Angeles, was earning nearly 200,000 pounds-a-year.
When the drama was cancelled in 2009, six years after she first joined, the Leicester-born actress agreed to take time off to look after their son, Kai, now three.
Stenson alleges that because of this the actress made considerably less money during their three years of marriage than before.
They married with two weddings – a civil and a Sikh ceremony – with former ‘ER’ co-star Maura Tierney, who played nurse Abigail Lockheart, officiating, and other co-stars performing at the reception.
But Nagra filed for divorce at Los Angeles Superior Court on February 8 this year citing “irreconcilable differences.”
She also asked that the court award her custody of their son and grant Stenson visitation rights but no spousal support.
The actress returned to the small screen earlier this year in the US drama ‘Alcatraz.’