Oil tycoon Prest’s ex-wife wins landmark court divorce ruling

City A.M. Reporter
THE ex-wife of Nigerian oil tycoon Michael Prest won a landmark divorce settlement battle in the Supreme Court yesterday in a closely watched case that had raised concerns about the accessibility of corporate assets in wealthy divorces.

Lawyers and wealth managers were watching to see how the court could issue a fair judgment without piercing the so-called legal corporate veil that treats companies and their shareholders as separate entities.

In a decision that will affect anyone seeking to protect personal assets by putting them into a corporate structure, judges upheld a ruling that awards Yasmin Prest a share in seven properties controlled by her husband’s firm Petrodel Resources.

The court ruled the property, initially represented as assets of the offshore company, was actually held in trust for her oil trading ex-husband from whom she was seeking the balance of a £17.5m divorce settlement.