08 December 2020

Divorcee with record £453 million payout says she rejected ‘kept woman’ offer

08 December 2020

The ex-wife of a Russian billionaire who was given a record £453 million divorce payout has told a judge how she rejected an offer to be a “kept woman”.

Tatiana Akhmedova 48, said businessman Farkhad Akhmedov, 65, had offered to pay her bills and expenses on a “regular basis”.

She told Mrs Justice Gwynneth Knowles that Mr Akhmedov’s offer was “obviously” not acceptable because she did not want to be “beholden” to him.

Mr Akhmedova was awarded a 41.5% share of Mr Akhmedov’s £1 billion-plus fortune, by another British judge in late 2016, after their 20-year marriage broke down.

Lawyers say the award is the biggest of its kind.

But judges have heard that she has so far pocketed about £5 million and that Mr Akhmedov has not “voluntarily” paid a penny.

Akhmedov court case (PA Wire)

Ms Akhmedova, who grew up in Russia but lives in London, is trying to get her hands on the money Mr Akhmedov owes and has taken legal action in Britain and abroad in a bid to trace assets.

She has also sued their eldest son Temur Akhmedov, 27, a London trader, accused him of helping his father hide assets and said he owes her nearly £70 million.

Mrs Justice Knowles is considering evidence at a trial in the Family Division of the High Court in London.

Ms Akhmedova told the judge that she had wanted to “conclude” their marriage in a “civilised way” but had rejected an offer from Mr Akhmedov.

“I was basically offered to be a kept woman,” she said.

“Basically would have my bills paid or my expenses paid on a regular basis which obviously would not be acceptable to me for certain reasons he would not understand.”

She said she did not want to be “beholden” to Mr Akhmedov.

Akhmedov court case (PA Archive)

Barrister Robert Levy QC, who is leading Temur’s legal team, said there had been a settlement offer of lump sum of more than £35 million, plus £5 million a year and an arrangement in which she would have been a beneficiary of an art collection.

Ms Akhmedova told the judge: “I don’t remember.”

Temur denies allegations against him and says his mother’s claim should be dismissed.

Mr Levy accepted that Temur had “done some wicked things”.

But he said Temur was not his father’s “lieutenant” and said Mr Akhmedov was the “ultimate decision maker at all times”.

Mr Akhmedov says because he and his ex-wife are not British and were not married in Britain, a British judge should not have made a decision.

Ms Akhmedova has already become embroiled in litigation with a number of trusts based in Liechtenstein, into which Mr Akhmedov has transferred assets.

Mrs Justice Knowles had been told how Mr Akhmedov had transferred a super-yacht, the Luna, worth around £340 million, and an art collection, worth around £110 million, into the ownership of trusts in Liechtenstein.

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