Tuesday, May 13, 2014

British millionaire denies claims he kept 'harem' of model lovers against their will

A British multi-millionaire accused of keeping a harem of model lovers against their will insisted he had been framed as part of an elaborate robbery ruse.

Oil tycoon Shoja Shojai, 56, admitted two former girlfriends and his wife were among the women police took away from his Costa del Sol holiday home - and claimed he fathered two children.

But he dismissed claims he had slept with all nine of the young females accusing him of duping them into staying against their will, or that he was father to their seven children.

And he insisted one of his ex-lovers lied about him assaulting and that his luxury Marbella mansion was emptied of millions of pounds worth of clothes, Persian rugs and jewellery while he was in custody.

Mr Shojai, who was born in Iran but has spent most of his adult life in the UK, claimed: “The idea I had a harem is madness.

“I have slept with three of my female accusers including my wife but I’ve been seeking a divorce from her for many years and my sexual relationship with the other two women was over long before my arrest.

“The other women were simply friends of theirs who worked with them in the fashion business and had their own homes and came and went from my house when they wanted.

“The claim I was holding them here against their will is ludicrous.”

Speaking from the living room of his rented £6,500-a-month home, he claimed: “Two 45-foot removal trucks were booked two weeks before the women reported me to police and a warehouse in Germany to receive my stuff was booked one month before.

“My house was robbed while I was in the police station answering the domestic violence allegations made against me.

“More than 25,000 personal items including all my personal papers, clothes, more than £2million worth of jewellery, 75 persian rugs and 20 tapestries were taken.

“The others were told I had been arrested by the FBI and taken to Guantanamo Bay and they needed to pack up and leave before the police arrived and they fell for it.

“I completely and absolutely deny all the allegations made against me. This was a cover-up to rob me.

“Thankfully I was released from custody in time and we managed to stop the lorries before they left Spain.

“Eight boxes of my stuff are now in a storage warehouse in nearby Estepona with a police seal round them.”

An investigating magistrate at a court in Marbella is probing the theft claims while another judge looks into the physical and psychological abuse allegations against him.

Several have made statements accusing him of threatening to harm them and their families if they left him.

The women, many aspiring models who say they met Mr Shojai in London while they were studying fashion design, have been taken to refuges.

Mr Shojai, who says he started a Swiss-based oil brokerage firm called Universal Resources Industries after a private school education in England, has been released from custody and is back at his ten-bed mansion with a gardener and a maintenance man who are standing by him.

He has hired two lawyers to defend him against the abuse accusations and a third to prosecute the women reported to have formed part of his harem for theft.

The nine women, who come from all over Europe and Asia including Mongolia, Russia, Kazakhstan and Denmark, are being represented by a total of three lawyers.

The two courts probing the extraordinary accusations are conducting their investigations in private and no-one has yet been formally accused or charged as is customary in Spain.

The women, mostly in their twenties, have declined to speak publicly but have insisted through their lawyers they stand by their stories and have nothing to do with the alleged multi-million pound theft.

“I was separated from my wife at the time and did not consider myself to be married and I did not keep a harem here. It’s impossible to keep one woman, let alone nine.

“These girls had complete freedom. They had nine cars at their service, they were travelling abroad almost every week.

“Five of them spent more than a month together in Milan for Milan Fashion Week.

“They used to go a local language school, riding school and dance school and they had three private teachers come here to teach them two different languages and karate.

“They had the best of everything. I can’t understand why they are making up these abuse allegations about me.”

Denying claims he had fathered seven children with four of his female accusers, he said: “I have two children with my wife and I recognise two other children as mine.

“But we are doing some DNA tests at the moment and I don’t want to say who the other two belong to.”

He also said reports he had boasted of friendships with Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama were wide of the mark.

“The reports I have been invited to give a lecture at the House of Commons are true,” he added.

“I was invited by an MP but didn’t go," he claimed.

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