A millionaire Belgian businessman has been jailed for contempt of court in the midst of contentious divorce proceedings.
Didier Thiry met former model Alisa on the Caribbean island of St Bartholemy (also known as ‘St Barts’). He was worth approximately £8 million at the time, the Huffington Post reports, but she had formerly received a sizable £32 million settlement from her first husband, Stephen Marks, the co-founder of fashion retailer French Connection.
Alisa worked as a creative director at the retailer and also as fashion editor of Elle magazine.
During the course of her second marriage, a company owned by Mrs Thiry is reported to have made a loan of £13.8 million to a second company owned by her new husband. They subsequently separated and she now claims this loan has not been paid back.
In March this year, High Court judge Sir Peter Singer had ordered the businessman to disclose information relating to the loan.
But at a subsequent High Court hearing, Mr Justice Newton declared that he had not done so.
The judge said:
“It must be understood by this husband, and by all husbands, that when considerable time, money and effort have been expended, it is simply unacceptable for the court to be treated in this way.”
Mr Thiry was sentenced to four months in prison. Mr Justice Newton noted, however, that the businessman could apply to ‘purge’ [clear] his contempt by providing the information ordered and by apologising to the court.
According to a report in the Telegraph, the husband is currently in Belgium and did not participate in the hearing.
Photo of St Barts by James Temple via Wikipedia under a Creative Commons licence