Fake prince’s goods go under the hammer
One of the most extraordinary auctions in Queensland’s history has taken place with the luxury possessions of a fake prince going under the hammer.
The Public Trustee on Sunday sold items owned by Joel Barlow, the former public servant who embezzled more than $16 million from Queensland Health while posing as Tahitian royalty.
There was a huge turnout for the auction, with Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate among the bidders.
He said he was hoping to purchase a Hermes saddle for an upcoming polo match against an Indian maharaja.
A Chanel necklace was among the items to be sold off early, fetching about $2,000 – almost double the retail price.
There were 1,500 items to be sold, including kitchenware, a Brett Whiteley screen print, two apartments, watches and even Barlow’s half-used soap.
Some items still had police evidence stickers.
Auctioneer John D’Agata said it was hoped the goods could fetch as much as $300,000.
“It is an extraordinary collection. He bought very well. He bought signed pieces. It’s a really interesting auction,” he said.
Barlow is due be sentenced later this month.