A former model has won £75million from her billionaire ex in one of the country's biggest divorce cases. Christina Estrada , 54, can now continue the lifestyle of “magical” luxury she got used to in her 12-year marriage to Saudi businessman Dr Sheikh ...
A former model has won Â£75million from her billionaire ex in one of the countryâ€™s biggest divorce cases. Christina Estrada , 54, can now continue the lifestyle of â€œmagicalâ€ luxury she got used to in her 12-year marriage to Saudi businessman Dr Sheikh Walid Juffali, 61. But the payout, the biggest divorce â€œneeds awardâ€ in English legal history, is less than half the Â£198million she had asked for, claiming it would have to meet costs including a Â£60million London home and Â£1million-a-year clothes bill. Juffali had offered her Â£37million, describing her demands as â€œexcessiveâ€, but she rejected it and got Â£53million. The total settlement, including her own assets, is about Â£75million, her lawyers said.
Walid Juffali and Christina Estrada at the 4 Inches photographic exhibition and auction in 2005
Outside the High Court in London yesterday Ms Estrada said she felt she has made history with her win. She said: â€œI feel very happy and delighted. And I am extremely grateful to the legal system which helped me on a complex and difficult road.â€ In a statement she added: â€œThis process has been incredibly bruising and distressing.â€ Dr Juffali is said to be worth said to be worth Â£8billion but he disputed the â€œfantasyâ€ figure, putting his current net worth at Â£113.8million.
During proceedings, Ms Estrada cried and banged on a table, and defended herself against Âaccusations of greed. At one point she told the court: â€œI was a top international model. I have lived this life. This is what I am accustomed to.â€ The court heard she had rejected a Â£6.5million home in posh Belgravia, Central London, as she might have had to share a floor with staff.
Christina Estrada and Idris Elba
As part of her settlement the former Pirelli calender girl got Â£18million to pay for a new property once she moves out of the family home. Judge Mrs Justice Roberts said: â€œI am Âsatisfied she can acquire a very comfortable home with Â£18million. With a net annual budget of Â£2.5million she can meet her reasonable needs. I have assessed those needs against what I know about their marital standard of living. â€œIâ€™m satisfied the basis of my award bears a sufficient correlation to that standard of living.â€
Phil Collins had to pay Orianne Cevey Â£25million
Christina Estrada's furs
In a statement later, Ms Estrada said: â€œI fully understand how this can be perceived in the wider world.â€ Dr Juffali, who has terminal lung cancer, has three weeks pay up, after which 5% interest per month will be added. He was also told to transfer a Mini Clubman to Ms Estrada and transport her Lamborghini from Switzerland, or pay her Â£140,000. He must also return to her a Â£4million blue diamond ring. The court heard how â€œextremely wealthyâ€ Dr Juffali and Ms Estrada enjoyed a â€œmagicalâ€ lifestyle with an â€œexorbitant standard of livingâ€. They wed after Dr Juffali divorced first wife Basma Al-Sulaiman, who got Â£40million after 24 yearsâ€™ marriage.
After a lavish Muslim ceremony in 2001, Ms Estrada lived with Dr Juffali in Â£100million Bishopsgate House in Surrey. They split the rest of their time between a London flat, a coastal retreat near Dartmouth, Devon, a house in Gstaad, Switzerland, and a 15th-century waterfront palazzo in Venice. They had a daughter, who cannot be named for legal reasons, and would often travel to the Juffali familyâ€™s marble palace in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah. Aside from managing her homes and staff, Ms Estrada worked for the Red Cross and helped set up charity Films Without Borders, providing film-making workshops for teens living in war zones.
Christina Estrada and Uma Thurman
Christina Estrada and Idris Elba
The couple mingled with stars and were at the centre of a glittering social scene. Dr Juffali threw his wife an extravagant 50th birthday party in Dubai, with gold-crested invitations for guests who were flown out on a fleet of private jets. But months later he wed Lebanese model Loujain Adada, 25, and now has two children with her. Under Saudi law men can take up to four wives. Ms Estrada launched divorce proceedings in 2013 but Dr Juffali divorced her using the Muslim law requiring a man only to say â€œI divorce youâ€ three times. Christina Estrada
Christina Estrada and Shirley Bassey
Ms Estrada had a modest upbringing in Seattle before moving to London in 1989. Before meeting Dr Juffali she was linked to Prince Andrew, Formula 1 boss Flavio Briatore and South African casino and hotel billionaire Sol Kerzner. After the judgement, Dr Juffaliâ€™s lawyers Mischon de Reya said: â€œHe has shown himself to be a fair man who has been prepared to offer his ex-wife a more than comfortable lifestyle for the rest of her life which he believes she deserves. â€œThe sole purpose of this case was to evaluate an appropriate financial settlement based on Ms Estradaâ€™s needs, as opposed to the extraordinary demands presented by her at the start of this case.â€
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