Ir­ish wife wins UK di­vorce bat­tle with mil­lion­aire hus­band

Irish Independent - - News - Jan Colley

AN IRISHWOMAN has won a Lon­don di­vorce court fight with her wealthy es­tranged Ira­nian hus­band.

Busi­ness­man Mehrdad Rad­seresht (72) claimed Bar­bara Spain-Rad­seresht (49) agreed to a di­vorce when they lived in the Mid­dle East more than seven years ago.

The cou­ple, who met through work in 1990 and mar­ried in Tehran two years later, ran suc­cess­ful busi­nesses to­gether.

Mrs Spain-Rad­seresht, who comes from Dublin and now lives in Lon­don, said she was “com­pletely un­aware” of the al­leged di­vorce in Dubai and says she is en­ti­tled to a fair share of a mar­i­tal for­tune – run­ning into tens of mil­lions of pounds.

The mother of three said she only found out about it a year ago when she made a sep­a­rate di­vorce ap­pli­ca­tion.

Yes­ter­day, Mr Jus­tice Co­hen re­jected Mr Rad­seresht’s claim that they reached a set­tle­ment in Septem­ber 2009 af­ter Mrs Spain-Rad­seresht was un­faith­ful, and that the di­vorce was en­ti­tled to recog­ni­tion in his ju­ris­dic­tion.

Mrs Spain-Rad­seresht said she signed what­ever doc­u­ments were put in front of her be­cause she was feel­ing guilty about the af­fair.

The judge said one of the doc­u­ments was in a lan­guage she did not un­der­stand, and she was given no ex­pla­na­tion or op­por­tu­nity to seek ad­vice.

He ruled that the di­vorce should not be recog­nised be­cause of the lack of no­tice and abil­ity to par­tic­i­pate.

The judge said that af­ter 2009, the di­vorce was not men­tioned to their chil­dren or friends, ho­tel book­ings and fi­nan­cial trans­ac­tions were made as hus­band and wife, and Mr Rad­seresht even pre­sented her to the vice-pres­i­dent of Iran as his “wife”.

“All of this is in­con­sis­tent with what the hus­band says was their now-di­vorced sta­tus.

“This case has been a fi­nan­cial and emo­tional dis­as­ter for the par­ties and the chil­dren,” he added.

“It has been ob­vi­ous through­out that the par­ties have found it very dif­fi­cult.

“I have not found that ei­ther party has the monopoly of truth or virtue.

“I am sure they both care deeply for their chil­dren, who have been so af­fected by th­ese pro­ceed­ings, and I urge them as strongly as I can to sit down and me­di­ate their re­main­ing dif­fer­ences so they can cease this bat­tle and the whole fam­ily can ben­e­fit.”

Bar­bara Spain-Rad­seresht

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