Millions of pounds of assets believed to be controlled by former Westminster Council leader Dame Shirley Porter have been frozen under orders granted by courts in England and Guernsey.
The Tesco heiress, who now lives in Israel, owes Westminster Council £37m in surcharges following a gerrymandering scandal in the 1980s. Once estimated to have a £60m fortune, she claimed to be worth just £300,000 when ordered by a court to disclose her assets last year.
Westminster Council said: "The council has applied for and been granted by the courts in England, Guernsey and the British Virgin Islands, disclosure orders against 14 different companies and individuals. The orders required the respondents to disclose information to the council about Dame Shirley Porter's past and present wealth.
"The disclosure orders have produced for the council a very substantial amount of information. The assets disclosed as a result of the court orders have a value of many millions of pounds. In the main, these assets are held in trusts and companies in other jurisdictions."
The council added that in addition to the freezing order against Dame Shirley herself, it has obtained similar orders over assets worth "many millions of pounds in others' hands. "The council believes that it has a good claim against the assets frozen by the court orders, it said. It is in the process of registering its English judgment against Dame Shirley in the Guernsey Court.