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Malaysian Court says no to big money divorce

The multimillion pound divorce of a wealthy Malaysian businessman is now likely to be held in England despite his attempts to launch proceedings in Kuala Lumpur.

Khoo Kay Peng, part owner of the Laura Ashley retail and design chain, was married to Pauline Chai, a one-time Miss Malaysia, for more than 40 years and they went on to have five children, all now adults. None of the family are British citizens but they lived an international lifestyle, buying a property in Hertfordshire in 1998.

Mr Peng is thought to be one of the wealthiest men in the country, with assets of up to £400 million. He had hoped to divorce his wife in the Malaysian courts, but the federal court in the capital city of Kuala Lumpur has now rejected his bid to do so.

His estranged wife still lives on the £30 million estate in Hertfordshire. She can expect a significantly higher financial settlement and share of assets in the English courts after launching parallel proceedings over here.

Earlier this year Mr Justice Holman criticised the “eye-watering” costs incurred by the couple in “preliminary skirmishes”.

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers based across our family law offices who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. As well as pieces from our family law solicitors, guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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