Belarusian model, 40, continues High Court fight in London for £5.7million from her ex-husband


A Belarusian model who claims her Texan tycoon ex-husband still owes her £5.7million is preparing for another round of their long-running High Court battle. 

Alesia Vladimirovna Haskell, 40, began legal action against Preston Haskell IV, 54, in 2016 after their marriage collapsed due to his unfaithfulness and ‘abuse of cocaine and alcohol’, a top family judge said.

US-born Mr Haskell was ordered to shell out about £5.7million to the mother of his three children, paid in installments, in early 2020.

Mr Haskell claimed at the time that he had nothing to give his ex-wife as he owed £55million to others – and was only getting by due to bail-outs from his super-rich father. 

But the judge said Mr Haskell was enjoying a high standard of living at the time. 

He asked his wife to sell her £100,000 engagement ring to pay for her upkeep – an act the judge slammed as ‘bordering on the grotesque’. 

Lawyers representing Mrs Haskell today told another judge that she is still owed money.

Mrs Haskell says Mr Haskell should be given a prison sentence if he does not pay – but her former-husband disagrees. 

Preston Haskell IV

Alesia Vladimirovna Haskell

Alesia Vladimirovna Haskell (right) began legal action against Preston Haskell IV (left) in 2016 after their marriage collapsed due to his unfaithfulness and ‘abuse of cocaine and alcohol’, a top family judge said

Mr Justice Moor oversaw a virtual hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London today – and said he aimed to reconsider the case on May 17.

Mr Haskell did not attend today’s hearing because he is in South Africa, a judge was told, but he has been ordered to attend the hearing in May.

Mrs Haskell says Mr Haskell should be given a prison sentence if he does not pay – but her former-husband disagrees.  

The couple enjoyed a lavish lifestyle during an 11-year relationship, but their marriage was blighted by his ‘serial infidelity’ and drink and drug use, a court heard last year.  

 Mr Haskell threw £1m parties and socialised with the rich and famous.

Mr Haskell claimed last year that he had nothing to give his ex-wife (pictured) as he owed £55million to others - and was only getting by due to bail-outs from his super-rich father

Mr Haskell claimed last year that he had nothing to give his ex-wife (pictured) as he owed £55million to others – and was only getting by due to bail-outs from his super-rich father

His wife was a member of the exclusive 5 Hertford Street club, where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle had their first date.

He made his £160m fortune in the property and restaurant business.  

Mr Haskell supported his wife for two years after their split in 2016 but in 2019 – when he realised they were not going to get back together – he denounced her as a ‘gold-digger,’ the judge said. 

After a week-long court battle in 2020,  Mr Justice Mostyn ordered Mr Haskell to shell out sums totaling about £5.7m to the mother of his three children. 

The ruling came after the judge saw social media posts from Mr Haskell, including one of the tycoon boasting about his ‘beautiful year’ and posing with a £400 bottle of vintage red wine.

Mr Justice Mostyn, sitting in the Family Court in London, said that despite Mr Haskell’s claim to have no ready cash, the evidence painted a picture of a man enjoying a high standard of living.

The Hugh Court (pictured) last year heard that the tycoon, 53, and his 39-year-old wife had met and married in Moscow in 2003

The Hugh Court (pictured) last year heard that the tycoon, 53, and his 39-year-old wife had met and married in Moscow in 2003

The court heard that the tycoon and his wife had met and married in Moscow in 2003 – but had a £3.3million family home in Chelsea later on.

Mr Haskell, whose father built a US construction empire, and his personal style consultant wife moved to London in 2013.

‘After their arrival in London in September 2013, the parties enjoyed a superior lifestyle dwelling, in high-quality rented accommodation,’ said the judge said last year.

‘Unfortunately, the marriage was blighted by the husband’s serial infidelity and abuse of cocaine and alcohol.

‘The wife issued a divorce petition on 24 November 2016 and commenced her claim for financial remedies on the same day.

‘On 21 December 2016, the parties physically separated, and although they discussed reconciliation they never cohabited again.’

The judge said Mr Haskell had continued supporting his ex, while himself enjoying a ‘high lifestyle’ during 2018.

But he continued: ‘In January 2019, the husband reached the conclusion that a reconciliation was not going to work and announced that the parties would proceed to a divorce.

‘At that point, everything changed. His attitude to the wife became unremittingly punitive.

The couple moved to London in 2013 and moved into a £3.3 million home in Chelsea, pictured

The couple moved to London in 2013 and moved into a £3.3 million home in Chelsea, pictured

‘He denounced her as a gold-digger and began a process of financial attrition which has led to the present dire situation where the wife and children are shortly to be evicted from their home in central London and made homeless.’

Mr Haskell began claiming he had no money and their lives would have to change, as re-focusing of his business interests had left him without ready cash.

In January last year alone, he cancelled the lease on their home and told her she had to get her own phone contract.

He also cancelled her membership of the exclusive 5 Hertford Street club.

‘In contrast, his American Express statement records that, in the month up to 22 January 2019, he had spent on that card alone nearly $19,000,’ said the judge.

Mr Haskell had displayed ‘insidious coercive control,’ demanding that she account for everything she spent and get his written permission before withdrawing money from her account’, he added.

In March 2019, a High Court judge ordered that he pay her £45,700-per-month in maintenance, more than double what Mr Haskell had offered to give.

But he failed to stump up all the cash and, by the time of the hearing of the divorce battle in January 2020, he owed her £310,000 in unpaid back maintenance.

The judge said Mr Haskell’s business affairs may be in a state of flux, but rejected his claim that he is in a ‘dire’ financial situation.

‘What was the husband doing, or not doing, from March until December 2019?’ he said.

‘He did not sell any of his assets. Nothing has been disposed of. He continued to enjoy his high lifestyle.

‘Thus, the wife was able to establish by looking at the husband’s postings on social media that he was on holiday in South Africa in April (when he posted a picture of himself paragliding with the caption ‘life is beautiful’); in Turkey in May; in St Tropez in June; in Ibiza in July; in Switzerland in July in order to attend a party hosted by the US ambassador to that country; and in December…at his beautiful home in Cape Town.

‘On 31 May, 2019, he posted a picture of himself holding a bottle of Château Haut-Brion 1966 with the caption: ‘It was a beautiful year’.’

Through companies and a trust, he owns a ‘magnificent’ £6.5million villa with ‘outstanding’ ocean views in Cape Town and another ‘fine villa’ worth about £1million in Johannesburg, the judge added.

‘No attempt has been made to sell either of these properties,’ he said.

‘If the husband’s financial position was really as dire as he proclaims, these would be the first to go under the hammer.

‘The husband maintains an office in Moscow where he employs numerous members of staff. Not one has been let go in this supposed time of crisis.’

He continued: ‘I do not take into account any value of the wife’s engagement ring. 

‘The husband was very keen that I should do so, asserting that it was worth perhaps £100,000.

‘It is bordering on the grotesque that the husband should be expecting the wife to liquidate this ring.’



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Written by Bourbiza Mohamed

A technology enthusiast and a passionate writer in the field of information technology, cyber security, and blockchain

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