A UK woman wants her multi-millionaire former husband jailed after he was accused of doctoring documents with Tipp-Ex.
Sally Nightingale, 55, who lives in 12th century Grade-I listed Appleby Castle in Cumbria, said estranged husband Christopher, 56, owes her about £1.5million, has ‘deliberately misled’ her and failed to produce documents.
Mrs Nightingale accused Mr Nightingale of being in contempt of court and wants him jailed.
She was told she would receive £1.5million from a share sale, but it was then cut to just £83 – almost 20,000 times less.
Sally Nightingale (left), 55, said estranged husband Christopher (right), 56, owes her about £1.5million
Detail of the alleged cover-up emerged today as judge Sir Peter Singer analysed the latest stage of the Nightingales’ money battle at a public hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London.
The High Court heard how financial aspects of the divorce appeared to have been settled in 2009 (following their split in 2008).
But she is still due a large sum from the sale of her ex-husband’s shares in Citadel100, a multi-million pound company he helped to found.
He had agreed to give her a quarter of his holding in the Dublin computer systems firm and said she would receive around £1.5million.
But that was slashed to £83 after he claimed the sale had been ‘very hard work’ and more complicated than expected. Instead of £6.6million, Mr Nightingale claimed he only received £330.
But she believes her husband spent the whole of the fortune in nine months.
In a previous hearing Mr Nightingale said he had worked hard for his money, adding: ‘Sally doesn’t appreciate it because she never had to work.’
Mrs Nightingale, with son Eddie, accused Mr Nightingale of being in contempt of court and wants him jailed
Patrick Chamberlayne QC, who is representing Mrs Nightingale, had outlined the background to the case in written documents given to the judge.
He said Mrs Nightingale was ‘trying to establish the whereabouts’ of the £1.5 million which was owed to her following a previous hearing in March 2014.
Mr Nightingale had ‘deliberately misled’ Mrs Nightingale and had not produced ‘all the relevant documents’ despite being ordered to do so.
Mr Chamberlayne said Mr Nightingale had been questioned about documents at a private family court hearing in October.
He added: ‘It became clear that he had doctored documents with Tipp-Ex and covered up photocopying in order to conceal the truth contained in those documents.
‘His explanations were wholly implausible.’
The couple had married in 1984, separated in 2008 and have three adult children.
Mr Nightingale had been a lawyer but in 1996 had left the legal profession to ‘pursue entrepreneurial activity’.
Mr Chamberlayne said Mr Nightingale had been ‘actively dishonest’ towards Mrs Nightingale.
He listed two ‘assets’ – a chateau in France and a library at Appleby Castle – which might be worth tens of thousands of pounds.
Sir Peter adjourned a trial to a date to be fixed after Mr Nightingale – who could be jailed if found to be in contempt – said he was not represented by a lawyer and wanted to apply for legal aid.