Swiss tycoon claims his estranged wife ruined art collection with a blowtorch

The latest twist in the tale of a socialite and her soon-to-be-ex-husband comes courtesy of a safe, a blow torch and millions of dollars worth of allegedly ruined art.

Tracey Hejailan lost the key to the safe in her Paris pied-à-terre, reports the New York Post, but rather than wait a few days for replacement she decided to handle it herself. “She had people enter the apartment and cut a large hole in the safe with what appears to be a cutting torch,” her estranged husband Maurice Alain Amon claims in court papers filed Thursday in Manhattan Supreme Court.

He claims the torch used emitted a burnt odor and deposited dust all over the apartment.

Amon had art expert Christopher Lucien assess the damage. Lucien claims in his court statement, “I saw with my naked eye that the majority of the contemporary art, by artists such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Damien Hirst, Richard Prince, Gerhard Richter, Cy Twombly and Andy Warhol, were covered by the fine concrete dust generated by breaking into the safe.”

He determined that the pieces may be impossible to clean.

The pair made headlines last month when Hejailan failed to get $25 million worth of art in divorce proceedings. Hejailan claimed Amon purposefully removed valuable works of art from their shared Manhattan apartment before he filed for divorce.

The couple was married for eight years and had no pre-nup.

[New York Post]

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