A Greek Australian mining magnate has borrowed against a high-profile Toorak mansion at the centre of a disputed tax bill, moving the money offshore to fund his family’s life in Europe, The Age reported.
According to the report, the home at 3 Towers Road, built by prominent businessman Socrates Vasiliades, was bought earlier this year by Sarah Lew, former daughter-in-law of business mogul Solomon Lew.
Documents show the title was transferred from the name of Mr Vasiliades’ wife Celeste to Ms Lew on October 22.
The ATO, in pursuit of a $29.8 million tax bill from Mr Vasiliades, the boss of Core Mining, produced a freezing order last month that covers the proceeds of the Towers Road sale.
The Federal Court was told that $2.6 million from a joint ANZ account secured against the Towers Road house had been transferred into a bank account in Luxembourg in Mr Vasiliades’ name.
Mr Vasiliades’ lawyer, Ian Martindale SC, said his client had moved to Europe in 2008 and had “virtually no assets worth freezing”.
He said his client’s bank was holding $2.71 million in proceeds, after the mortgage and real estate agent fees were paid, from the sale of Towers Road.
Mr Martindale said he would contest the tax office’s position that Mr Vasiliades had a stake in assets in his wife’s name.
source: Neos Kosmos