Thursday, 16 December 2010
Ten Most Expensive Divorces
1. Rupert and Anna Murdoch – $1.7 billion
Rupert married Anna in the 1960s, with the pair remaining together for 32 years, having three children. They split amicably in 1998. The divorce was finalised in June 1999 when he agreed to let her leave with $1.7 billion. 17 days later he married Wendi Deng.
2. Adnan and Soraya Khashoggi – $874 million
Saudi businessman Adnan made his money as an international arms dealer. He then launched his company Triad, based in Switzerland, owning banks hotels and real estate across the world. He married Soraya in 1961. Their 1982 divorce resulted in an estimated $874 million settlement.
3. Craig and Wendy McCaw - $460 million
Craig made his money turning a failing TV cable service into a successful business, eventually selling for $755 million. In 1981 he then acquired cellular phone licenses, eventually selling to phone company AT&T for approximately $12 billion, becoming its largest single shareholder. The pair met at Stanford University when she tutored him, with them marrying in 1974. In 1995 divorce proceedings were initiated with Wendy wanting her share to support a $200,000 a month lifestyle.
4. Roman and Irina Abramovich - $300 million
It had been speculated that the settlement could have left her the world’s richest ever divorcee. But according to Russian news sources, Mrs Abramovich settled for $300m (£155m). The figure included the value of homes in Britain and Moscow, as well as a yacht and private plane. At one point it was thought he would have to pay a settlement of at least $1 billion.
5. Michael and Maya Polsky - $184 million
According to court records, the couple married in the Ukraine in 1975, coming to the US in 1976 with “only four suitcases and $500 in cash. After sighting irreconcilable difference in 2003, Maya Polsky filed for divorce from energy magnate Michael Polsky. In October 2006 a Chicago judge said Mrs Polsky was entitled to at least half of the couple’s assets.
6. John ‘Jack’ Welch and Jane Beasley - $180 million
Welch is the former Chairman and CEO of General Electric, the technology and service conglomerate in New York, now ranked as the world’s largest company. The couple married in April 1989, divorcing in 2003. While Welch had reportedly written a prenuptial agreement, there was a 10-year time limit. Beasley reportedly left with amount to be in the range of $180 million.
7. Michael and Juanita Jordan - $168million
The most expensive celebrity divorce in history. The former Chicago Bulls basketball superstar married Juanita Vanoy in 1989. They divorced in 2007. It is thought negotiations between the couple added £20 million to the final deal from an initial settlement. The marriage had shown signs of trouble in the past with Juanita filing for divorce in 2002, although they announced a reconciliation.
8. Neil Diamond and Marcia Murphey - $150 million
When Diamond met Marcia Murphey, he was already married to his first wife. In 1994, they separated, she citing “irreconcilable difference”. The singer claims he willingly gave her the money.
9. Steven Spielberg and Amy Irving – $100 million
Amy Irving shot to fame in 1976 when she played the lone teen survivor in Carrie. Spielberg began to make a name for himself in Hollywood, following Jaws. The pair married in 1985, but the pair broke up four years later. He gave Irving, the mother of their son Max $100 million.
10. John and Beverly Charman - $95 million
The pair met in 1969 at school. When they married in 1976 neither had significant resources. In November 2003, Mr Charman, nicknamed “King of the London Insurance Market”, told his wife he was setting up residence in Bermuda and their marriage was over.He initially offered her £6 million cash, but she argued that the sum was not enough. The judge decreed a fair settlement would involve him giving 37 per cent of his assets. Mr Charman had a subsequent appeal dismissed. It is thought to be Britain’s highest divorce settlement.
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