Bell Pot­tinger scan­dal leaves shat­tered lives in its wake

Sunday Tribune - - FRONT PAGE -

Heather Kerzner, vi­va­cious ex-wife of South African ho­tel and casino mag­nate Sol Kerzner.

By March this year, they were en­gaged. Not long af­ter­wards, 48-yearold Heather Kerzner was mak­ing a sig­nif­i­cant ges­ture of com­mit­ment to their re­la­tion­ship, in­vest­ing sev­eral mil­lions of her per­sonal for­tune by buy­ing a 15% stake in Hen­der­son’s PR firm, Bell Pot­tinger.

But amid al­le­ga­tions it tried to stoke up racial ha­tred in South Africa while work­ing for a lu­cra­tive client, the com­pany – set up by Mara­gret Thatcher’s favourite ad-man, Lord Tim Bell – has spec­tac­u­larly col­lapsed. It has left Heather Kerzner’s multi-mil­lion­pound stake vir­tu­ally worth­less and Hen­der­son, who quit as the firm’s chief ex­ec­u­tive, out of a job.

This week it was re­vealed their planned wed­ding had been called off and Hen­der­son had moved out of his fi­ancée’s Chelsea town­house.

It also emerged that Heather Kerzner had hired a top lawyer to try to claw back money from the firm’s for­mer direc­tors. The po­ten­tial le­gal ac­tion is the lat­est chap­ter in a scan­dal that looks un­likely to die down any time soon.

But while its col­lapse is dev­as­tat­ing for Bell Pot­tinger’s part­ners and em­ploy­ees, it is noth­ing short of tragic for Hen­der­son, who has lost ev­ery­thing, and for Heather Kerzner, whose life of gilded lux­ury may now come to a shud­der­ing halt. – Daily Mail

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