By: Hal C Clarke
Billionaire investor Michael Fisch found himself in a heated divorce battle where tensions reached a boiling point during a recent court hearing. The Manhattan judge presiding over the case, Justice Ariel Chesler, had to admonish Fisch to maintain his composure and let the lawyers handle the proceedings.
The NY Post has been covering this entertaining divorce saga.
During the contentious hearing in Manhattan Supreme Court, Fisch, 61, and his estranged wife, philanthropist and former model Laura Roberson-Fisch, 63, engaged in a bitter dispute over the division of their assets, including three mansions in the upscale Hamptons area valued at nearly $100 million.
Fisch, who oversees the New York-based private equity fund American Securities with assets totaling $7 billion, was accused by Laura’s lawyer of “looting art” from their shared residence. Furthermore, it was alleged that he had pledged to provide Laura with only a token sum from her expected substantial divorce settlement while the legal battle continued.
In response, Fisch’s attorney, Marilyn Chinitz, argued that Laura had engaged in concerning behavior by allegedly stalking Fisch. Chinitz claimed that Laura had observed an unknown car in the driveway of their East Hamptons mansion during Fisch’s allotted time at the property and had confronted him.
Amid the exchange of accusations and allegations, Justice Chesler attempted to maintain order in the courtroom. However, tensions escalated further when Chinitz reassured the judge of her intent to stay focused on the case, prompting a sharp retort from Laura’s attorney, Jonathan Wolfe, who accused Chinitz of seeking to sensationalize the proceedings.
Wolfe made several explosive claims, including the assertion that Laura had obtained a restraining order against Fisch due to his alleged removal of art from their shared home. Additionally, he accused Fisch of refusing to agree not to bring other women into the bed where Laura sleeps on alternating weeks.
It was revealed that the couple, married for 33 years with four children and no prenuptial agreement, possessed a valuable art collection potentially worth over $500 million. While Fisch’s precise net worth remained undisclosed, sources suggested it was at least $10 billion.
Despite his initial composed demeanor, Fisch’s frustration became evident as the hearing progressed. He leaned forward in his chair, expressed his exasperation through gestures and facial expressions, and raised his voice in defense against the allegations.
Fisch argued that he had provided sufficient records regarding the couple’s joint financial assets and accused Laura’s lawyers of fabricating falsehoods. However, his outbursts led to admonishments from the judge, who implored him to listen.
The courtroom became chaotic, with lawyers shouting over each other, prompting the judge to call for order and encourage both sides to find common ground. While the primary purpose of the hearing was to address Laura’s entitlement to financial records, the proceedings veered into personal accusations and disputes.
Ultimately, the judge ruled that Fisch must disclose all his bank and investment accounts, but he denied Laura access to details of Fisch’s daily spending habits. The divorce case is set to resume on November 15, with tensions and disputes likely to persist.