Luxury yacht of Papas associate up for auction

But Lloyds’ website notes the yacht needs work, noting cracks to the hull structure, water stains and wood damage.

“Vessel requires repairs, buyers are urged to undertake their own research and investigations prior to placing a bid as bids are final. Inspection is highly recommended,” the auctioneer’s website said.

The yacht is the centrepiece of a lavish set of assets Mr Papas, via various entities, bought over several years.

In June 2018, Mr Papas, who is currently in Greece, approved the $1.2 million purchase of the yacht via a company owned by him and Mr Tesoriero. In August 2019, the boat was signed over to an Australian registered company owned by Mr Tesoriero. Mr Papas’ former home was held by a company owned by Mr Tesoriero.

In early September, liquidators McGrathNicol were given the green light by the federal court to sell a $1.4 million yacht and tens of millions of dollars worth of property held by various entities owned by Mr Papas and Mr Tesoriero.

In February, the sale of Mr Papas’ Wagstaffe weekender for $13.5 million set a record for the central coast region. The property had been purchased by a company co-owned by Mr Papas and Ms Tesoriero 18 months prior for $9.5 million.

Mr Tesoriero is also director of a trust that owns the Rozelle registered address of Mr Papas, which was recently forcibly sold for about $4.4 million.

He had attempted to stop the liquidator’s sale of the yacht.

But Justice Lee said the evidence was that the yacht was purchased using funds from FGFS (Forum Group Financial Services) “and other companies in liquidation and the current legal owner received title to the yacht upon payment of nominal consideration.”

“It is entirely opaque to me on the evidence of how Mr Tesoriero advances a claim that he be entitled to be vested in title of the yacht after those proceedings are commenced,” Justice Lee said.

Last year, McGrathNicol’s barrister, in open court, described FGFS as “the heart of the fraudulent scheme” and was paid at least $282.4 million by Forum Finance, according to Westpac.

Mr Tesoriero is the third defendant in proceedings launched against Mr Papas and various Forum Group entities. Mr Papas and many of his companies are alleged to have defrauded Westpac, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking of Japan and French bank Société Générale to the tune of nearly $400 million.

Mr Tesoriero’s application to have the case against him thrown out will be heard on March 10. He denies any involvement in the scheme alleged against Mr Papas and Forum.

The case continues.

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