LOS ANGELES: Yogi Bikram Choudhury made his name and a £60 million fortune from superheated yoga in which devotees, including celebrities such as David Beckham, Lady Gaga and Madonna, sweat through exercise routines in 105F heat.
But now, the charismatic yoga guru has been stripped of his worldwide empire by a Los Angeles court – the latest twist in a £6.4 million sex harassment case brought by Oxford-educated lawyer Minakshi Jafa-Bodden, a former employee.
As well as being awarded the 700 franchised Bikram Yoga studios around the globe, Miss Jafa-Bodden will also receive Choudhury's multi-million-pound fleet of 43 cars, which includes 13 Rolls-Royces, eight Bentleys and three Ferraris.
That's if she can find them. Last week, as letters went out to the Bikram Yoga franchises worldwide telling them of the change at the top, Choudhury's garage manager was summoned to the Los Angeles Superior Court, to explain where the cars are – and why they have been removed from a vehicle compound in violation of court orders.
Last night, Miss Jafa-Bodden, 47, who left her career in international litigation with a London City law firm to take what she thought would be her dream job as the head of Bikram Yoga's legal team, told: 'Bikram is no longer the boss of Bikram Yoga. I am. I've been to hell and back, but the jury has spoken. Bikram has tried to conceal assets and has fled America, but justice will be done.'