Beds, Herts & Bucks

Laura Ashley boss and ex-wife told to settle differences

Khoo Kay Peng Image copyright PA
Image caption Khoo Kay Peng argues that his former wife is entitled to about £9m

A Laura Ashley boss and his former wife embroiled in a multi-million pound divorce case have been told they could live in "considerable comfort" by a judge if they settle their differences.

Pauline Chai, 70, of Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire, claims their assets are worth at least £205m and wants half.

Khoo Kay Peng, 78, a non-executive chairman of Laura Ashley Holdings, argues she should receive about £9m.

Mr Justice Bodley told the couple: "You are not in the first flush of youth."

He added: "If arrangements were made, you could live the rest of your lives in considerable comfort."

Image copyright PA
Image caption Pauline Chai was Miss Malaysia 1969

More than £6m has been spent on lawyers since their marriage broke down.

The couple, who both come from Malaysia, married in 1970 and have five children.

The hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London comes after Ms Chai claimed victory in the fight over jurisdiction for the case, after saying the pair had moved their home to Berhamsted before separating.

Dr Khoo had argued that because their marital home was in Malaysia, a judge there should make decisions over money division.

He labelled Ms Chai a "forum shopper", believing she wanted to have the hearing in England because an English judge would be more generous.

The hearing is due to continue on Wednesday.

Related Topics

More on this story