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An arrest warrant has been issued for Bikram Choudhury, 70, the founder of the eponymous style of hot yoga. Choudhury is being pursued by US authorities after failing to pay $US6.5 million (8.7 million) to a former legal adviser, “Mikki” Jafa-Bodden, in a sexual harassment case. She claimed that he had wrongfully sacked her from her position for refusing to cover up an investigation in a rape allegation against him.

Choudhury fled the USA after the courts found him guilty and ordered him to pay damages. Authorities claim he fled to India, then Asia before travelling to Mexico to conduct a teacher training course. The lawyer representing Mikki, Carla Minnard, has reportedly said, “We will keep pursuing him however long it takes, wherever it takes,” she said. “I don’t care where he goes, how much money it costs us, how many lawsuits we have to file, how many hundreds of hours we have to spend — we are going to collect on this judgment.”

Bikram Choudhury trademarked and aggressively protected his yoga sequence that involves 26 postures performed over 90 minutes in a room heated to 40 degrees Celsius. His popularity and wealth grew after celebrities like George Clooney, Lady Gaga, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, Madonna and Jennifer Aniston adopted his practice. His net worth is estimated to be $US75 million with a reported yearly income of $US10 million. Bikram Yoga

Bikram Choudhury,