London: An oil tycoon has won a landmark case for slashing the divorce payout of 17.5 million pounds (about $28 million) to his ex-wife amount by nine million pounds, taking recourse to an African customary law.
Multi-millionaire Michael Prest, 50, of African descent and one of Britain`s most successful businessman, originally claimed under "native" African law, his oil company didn`t belong to him, Daily Mail reported.
Despite being slammed for his "ingenious and dishonest" attempts to conceal his huge wealth from the divorce courts, Prest won the marathon legal fight.
Though his ex-wife Yasmin, 49, insisted that Prest was worth "tens if not hundreds of millions of pounds" and asked for an award of about 30 million pounds, he maintained he was worse than being penniless.
Prest stated he had net debts of 48 million pounds and thus his ex-wife was entitled to only just over 2 million pounds.
One of the country`s top family judges said that "there were almost no lengths to which he (Prest) was not prepared to go" in his fight to cut down Yasmin`s divorce settlement.