Nathan TinklerAFTER years of wearing Nathan Tinkler’s public relations flak jacket, Sydney-based spin doctor Tim Allerton has taken court action to shut down the Tinkler Group due to unpaid debts.
Mr Allerton’s City Public Relations firm joins a long list of creditors forced to take drastic action over the past few years to recover debts from the former billionaire.
The Kent Street corporate and public relations specialist spent four years working as Mr Tinkler’s public apologist, putting out bushfires and defending the former coal baron’s business practices.
But the relationship has soured with Mr Allerton filing action last week in the NSW Supreme Court to wind up the parent company of Mr Tinkler’s dwindling empire.
When asked about the matter on Wednesday, Mr Allerton confirmed he was no longer working for Mr Tinkler but declined to reveal how much he was owed.
‘‘I really don’t have any comments to make in relation to that matter at all,’ he said.
The Newcastle Herald was unable to contact Mr Tinkler.
Patinack Farm’s HunterValley properties – Tremayne at Broke and the former Patinack headquarters, Richmond Grove at Sandy Hollow – will be up for grabs at auction in Sydney on Thursday.
Mr Tinkler is attempting to clear a $40million debt owed to Harvey Norman founder Gerry Harvey.
The Australia Taxation Office (ATO) has also registered two mortgages in relation to Patinack’s assets as part of a settlement with Mr Tinkler.
They were signed last month and in May, with one reportedly relating to a $20.1million debt, signed between the Tax Commissioner, Mr Tinkler, Patinack entities and the companies that own the Jets and the Knights.
The first offering of Patinack Farm properties last week ended with no immediate sales. The auction in Queensland failed to reach expected prices and the four properties were passed in.
Final bids on Patinack’s Canungra properties were $4.5million for Wadham Park, $1.8million for Elysian Fields, $3.5million for Benobble and $1.8million for Sarahvale – a total of $11.6million.
Before the auction, LJHooker managing agent Cameron McPhie said the sale was expected to make between $17million and $23million.
The Herald understands that as of Wednesday, the Hunter’s remaining Patinack Farm staff had not been paid wages for about a month.
It is understood there are still a significant number of horses at the Sandy Hollow property.
Mr Tinkler and his former right-hand man Troy Palmer might have to front a courtroom over the liquidation of Patinack Farm Administration (PFA) and $5million owed to creditors.
Amid a scuffle for company records, Adelaide-based liquidator Anthony Matthews and Associates have applied to publicly examine the pair, and Patinack chief financial officer Tony Marshall, in the South Australian Supreme Court in December.
An alleged payment of about $5million from PFA, previously the main employer at Mr Tinkler’s thoroughbred stud, to another Tinkler-group company is at the centre of the probe.