Duncan Bannatyne provided false evidence during divorce battle, says judge

Duncan Bannatyne
Duncan Bannatyne

Businessman and television personality Duncan Bannatyne provided false evidence during a divorce money fight with his former wife, a judge has said.

Judge David Hodge said Mr Bannatyne's aim was to mislead a court for financial gain.

The judge said Mr Bannatyne, who lived in Wynyard, later corrected "the situation".

Detail emerged in a ruling by the judge after Mr Bannatyne became involved in a legal fight with a newspaper publisher over whether the public could be told what he did.

The judge ruled in favour of Associated Newspapers, which publishes the Daily Mail and the Mail on Sunday.

He said there was a public interest in exposing attempts to mislead a court even if the person making such attempts had repented.

Mr Bannatyne was ordered to foot lawyers' bills run up by Associated Newspapers.

Judge Hodge analysed the dispute at a High Court hearing in Manchester last month.

Mr Bannatyne and his ex-wife had been involved in a "fraught divorce", said Judge Hodge.

They had then become embroiled in a legal dispute over money.

Their cash dispute had been settled - on terms approved by a judge nearly three years ago.

Mr Bannatyne had subsequently become embroiled in a separate legal dispute with a former employee.

Graham Armstrong - a former chief executive of a fitness company run by Mr Bannatyne - had earlier this year claimed damages for wrongful dismissal.

Judge Hodge indicated that the litigation had yet to reach a conclusion.

And detail of evidence given by Mr Bannatyne when he was arguing over money with his ex-wife had emerged in court documents relating to the Armstrong case.

Associated Newspapers wanted access to material in those documents.

But Mr Bannatyne said "certain parts of the statements" should be redacted - and not made public.