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JCB heir fails to take control of US company at centre of legal row with ex-best friend

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The heir to the digger company JCB has failed in an attempt to take control of a business run by his former best friend after a bitter US courtroom battle that included lurid allegations about personal conduct – and even revealed an apparent attempt to buy Michael Jackson’s Neverland ranch.Jo Bamford, a grandson of the JCB founder, sued Joseph Manheim last year in Delaware, claiming that his former friend had “surreptitiously” taken control of a company they set up to help wealthy, mainly Chinese, investors get residence in the US.

Bamford, 44, a self-styled “green entrepreneur”, claimed Manheim secretly siphoned millions of dollars from the business and Bamford sought damages of $13.8m (£11.3m).Bamford is the son of Anthony Bamford, the billionaire peer and chairman of JCB – and a major donor to the prime minister, Boris Johnson.

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