Property tycoon Nick Candy “paid £1.2 million” for Katy Perry to sing at his wedding to popstar Holly Valance, the High Court in London heard on Friday.
Candy wouldn’t confirm an exact figure, saying that it was “maybe less or more, I don’t know,” in response to questions from barrister Roger Stewart, who suggested the price tag.
Australian popstar and former soap actress Holly Valance married Candy in 2012. Candy said the purported £1.2 million price didn’t reflect his wider lifestyle.
“That’s not my lifestyle, that’s a one-off event,” he said. “I won’t get married again.”
Nick Candy and his brother Christian are currently fighting a £132 million battle against a former university friend, Mark Holyoake, in a case which has shone an unwelcome spotlight on their financial and personal affairs. Holyoake has accused the Candy brothers of intimidating his family, blackmail, and extortion, over a London property deal which turned sour.
The brothers are well-known as the property developers behind some of the UK’s most lavish homes, including One Hyde Park. At the time of its redevelopment, One Hyde Park commanded a higher price per square foot than any other property in the UK. The pair has also been criticised for allegedly arranging their finances to avoid paying tax.
During his cross-examination by Stewart, who represented Holyoake, Candy was often jovial and drew comparisons between himself and US President Donald Trump, also a property developer.
He said his Candy and Candy interior design business followed the “Donald Trump model” of branding and licensing in property. His brother, he said, was more involved in construction.
Stewart asked Candy whether he might consider running as US president after the tycoon commented: “I’m probably not as unpopular as Donald Trump now.”
He responded that he could “run for governor” and said friends at the Alfafa Club Dinner, a US event attended by influential politicians had advised him to “leave all this mess behind you” and become a US citizen. (Only natural born US citizens can become president.)
During the trial, the Candy brothers have sought to paint Christian as the more successful and wealthier of the two.
Nick Candy described himself as a “failed accountant” after an early stint at KPMG and said he “was not very astute” at finance.
“Show me accounts, and I’d sign them,” he said.
He boasted of making “tens and tens and tens of millions” through his efforts in property, and disclosed that he moved to Monaco in 2005 for tax reasons. He now lives in a flat at One Hyde Park.
Earlier, the court had heard that Nick Candy had been given the nickname “Clown Candy” by the Holyoake family, with whom he was once close. Today he denied any knowledge of the nickname but admitted his former friend did call him “Ricky Butcher,” a fictional character from the TV show “Eastenders”, because “he thought I was as thick as two short planks.”
Candy strongly denied Mark Holyoake’s allegations that he had threatened the Holyoake family, saying the idea made him “sick”.
On Friday, the High Court heard that an advisor to Christian Candy, Steven Smith, was connected to Russian dissident Alexander Litvinenko and to the man accused of murdering him with Polonium-210, Andrey Lugovoy.
The case continues.