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Filipino investors sue developer

TWO Filipino businessmen have taken legal action against developer and entreprenuer Dean Scook, his business partner Carol Hardie and two of their companies, one of which was originally involved in plans to redevelop the former Shenton Park Hotel.

Perth-based Muries Lawyers issued the $1.6 million writ on behalf of plaintiffs George Tan Go and Patrick Yap Tong, both of whom reside in the Philippines.

Muries Lawyers didn’t respond to calls made by WA Business News.

The writ has been issued to Dean Scook, Carol Hardie, Challiston Pty Ltd and Bushgrove Nominees Pty Ltd.

Mr Scook and Ms Hardie were involved in the initial redevelopment plans of the old Shenton Park Hotel.

In December 1997 Ms Hardie, in the role of Bushgrove spokesperson, defended the company’s plans to demolish one of Perth’s oldest hotels. At that time Ms Hardie was quoted in a newspaper report in regard to the retirement village proposal that was before the Subiaco Council.

Ms Hardie said a hotel was incompatible, both with plans for the retirement village and the local residential area.

She said Bushgrove’s original plan was to put a dining room and coffee shop in the hotel for the retirees only, but it was prepared to change it to incorporate a restaurant that would be open to the public.

This week Mr Scook told WA Business News a counter demand totalling $580,000 had been issued to George Tan Go and Patrick Yap Tong.

“The issue is that they owe us some money … it’s in relation to an old property project,” he said. “That’s just simply where it’s at. We’ve issued a counter demand of about $580,000. I’ve left it to my lawyer but he’s away at the moment.

Mr Scook said the matter was not related to the Shenton Park Hotel redevelopment.

He said that a managed investment scheme registered with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission was never marketed to raise funds for the redevelopment.

Instead, Mr Scook said he had owned the hotel site, which had been rezoned and then sold.

He said there had been other investors in the project but they had sold out of the venture.

The site has since undergone a multi-million dollar redevelopment into a retirement com-plex that is being marketed under the name Shenton Village.

Shenton Village spokesman Mark Rosser said the development had no links with Dean Scook, Carol Hardie or Challiston or Bushgrove.

Mr Rosser said the retirement village was owned by a group of private investors.

“It was owned by some people but I’m not associated with the previous owners,” he said.

Department of Land Administration records show that the owner of the Shenton Village at 200 Nicholson Road is AAAJ Consulting Pty Ltd.

“Initially the feasibility of the project was based on a managed investment scheme but it had to be changed when the Government changed their ruling,” Mr Rosser said.

“There’s absolutely no connection between the previous owners and us.”

A Shenton Park project was referred to in evidence at the Royal Commission into the Finance Broking Industry when an investor with Clifton Partners complained about the way his money was transferred among investments, including the former hotel.

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