A spacious five-bedroom house in Collina, deemed an asset of a collapsed Griffith winery, has been advertised for sale for $790,000.
Sans Pareil Estate, owned by 29-year-old Hanwood farmer Aaron Salvestrin, went into liquidation in October 2022, allegedly owing the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) $32 million.
While most winery assets have already been sold by the liquidator, a large residential property at 39 Brooks Street on 943 square metres of land was first listed for sale by real estate agent LJ Hooker on Tuesday (6 February).
“This stunning property with high skirting finish and decorative and square set cornices is sure to captivate you with its impeccable features and thoughtful design,” the advertisement states.
The 275 square metre house has a formal lounge; ducted cooling and heating; an open plan kitchen, family and dining area; an ensuite in the main bedroom; and a double garage.
If the asking price is reached, the house’s value will have increased by 70 per cent since 2015, when it was sold for $465,000. The land was initially purchased for just $60,000 in 2013 – a measure of how property and land prices have boomed in Griffith over the past decade.
In February 2022, the residence was purchased for $711,000 by Salvestrin Enterprises Pty Ltd, one of nine companies associated with the Sans Pareil Estate winery. All nine companies went into liquidation in October 2022.
The liquidator, insolvency firm Chifley Advisory, had been unable to sell this Collina property because it was held in trust for the benefit of a third party that may not have been part of the winery.
Chifley Advisory took the matter to the NSW Supreme Court, applying to become the receiver for Salvestrin Enterprises Pty Ltd, giving it the power to manage and sell assets within the trust.
The court was told that Mr Salvestrin objected to Chifley Advisory becoming the receiver; however, after a couple of hearings, Supreme Court Judge Kate Williams decided to give the liquidator the power to “take possession of, preserve, maintain, and sell the assets comprising of the trust property [39 Brooks Street]” in a decision published on 9 November 2023.
Funds raised from the sale of the property will be collected by the liquidator and used to repay creditors owed money by the winery.
In December 2023, the liquidator indicated it was beginning to seek appraisals of the house from local real estate agents. Two months later, it is finally on the market, with the first open house viewing held on Saturday (10 February).
Region understands this property had been rented out to unrelated tenants for $800 a week and is located next door to where Mr Salvestrin himself previously lived.
The neighbouring four-bedroom former residence of the 29-year-old at 37 Brooks Street was bought for $850,000 in June 2021 and sold for $775,000 in February 2023.
Region’s ongoing investigation has revealed at least 30 vehicles have also been listed as assets of Sans Pareil Estate during its four years of operation.
Liquidators sold an imported McLaren P1 supercar signed by Formula One star Daniel Ricciardo for $1.47 million in January 2023. A Mercedes Benz Actros truck, a Mercedes Benz GLE53, two Volkswagen Tiguans, a Volkswagen Amarok and three Mitsubishi Outlanders were also listed as winery assets.
The liquidator has also initiated separate Supreme Court proceedings to recover money from Mr Salvestrin. The case is scheduled to have its final hearing on 6 March 2024.
In court documents, the ATO alleged the winery created fake financial statements to receive GST refunds to which they were not entitled.
All Supreme Court matters regarding Mr Salvestrin have been in the civil jurisdiction, meaning they relate to property or money and are not criminal matters. He has not been charged with any offences in relation to his winery.
Original Article published by Oliver Jacques on Region Riverina.