Highland Chief Says Wife Should Get Nothing In Divorce

Oct 25 2013 | 10:33am ET

Highland Capital Management founder James Dondero's bitter two-year divorce battle is coming to a head.

Dondero is asking a jury to give his wife nothing at the Dallas divorce trial, in spite of the pre-nuptial agreement that calls for Rebecca Dondero to receive up to $5 million.

In spite of tens of millions in earnings in recent years, Dondero has claimed that he is technically insolvent under Texas law due to pending lawsuits against Highland. He also yesterday argued that Rebecca violated their pre-nup when she asked for more than the $5 million specified.

Rebecca Dondero's lawyers, in a pre-trial hearing, called for the pre-nup to be voided. That action effectively voided the deal, Dondero's lawyers say. A decision is expected today.

Dondero has accused his wife of six years of having an affair, first with his now-former business partner, Patrick Daugherty. After he learned that Daugherty was innocent of the allegation, he told him that he had 20,000 e-mails proving that his wife was sleeping with another, unidentified man.

"Dondero explained to Daugherty how evil his wife was and why he was determined to pay her nothing in the divorce," Daugherty said in court papers. He later testified on Rebecca Dondero's behalf, telling the court that Dondero had asked him to lie.

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