Calls made to reopen Offset Alpine fire case

The fire, which netted a $53m insurance payout, is said to have benefitted disgraced stockbroker Rene Rivkin, Qantas director Trevor Kennedy and former federal Labor minister Graham Richardson a significant amount of money when shares jumped on news of the payout.

The fire has been widely deemed as suspicious since news surfaced that the trio were the mystery owners of a 38 per cent stake in the company concealed in a Swiss bank account. The shares quadrupled from 65c when insurer FAI purchased its stake days before the fire to $2.72 when the company was sold two years later.

Vincent says that he has long been suspicious of the circumstances surrounding the fire, and is curious as to why the insurers paid up so quickly. Vincent was responsible for setting up the company’s new-for-old insurance policy. At the time, the presses were worth $3m, but received a replacement valuation of $43m.

Vincent believes that recent revelations by Rivkin’s former chauffeur Gordon Wood that indicated the fire was fraudulent should prompt the authorities to re-examine the circumstances surrounding the fire.

A coronial investigation at the time of the blaze found insufficient evidence to conclude on the cause of the fire.

Offset Alpine is now part of IPMG , which has no connection whatsoever with the events of 10 years ago.

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