Mr Hindi and his daughter Rachel
With Sydney real estate prices soaring to unheard of heights, Hurstville Mayor Con Hindi and his children have made a packet lately and their antics have come to the attention of Sydney Morning Herald journalist Kate McClymont.
Although the son of Con Hindi, the property developing mayor of Hurstville, was only 20, late last year Malcolm Hindi splashed out more than $2 million for a waterfront property.
Malcolm Hindi, a university student, may be about to make a motza with rumours that Kogarah Council is set to re-zone the area to allow six-storey developments.
Last year, Con and Miray Hindi's daughter Rachel showed similar good fortune property wise when her parents sold her a development site they owned.
In less than a fortnight, the university student on-sold it for $980,000 – making $330,000 profit in only 12 days.
On 12 November, 2014, Malcolm Hindi set up a company Blakehurst Holdings. His partner Xiaomin Shen, 57, is the father-in-law of Liberal councillor Christina Wu. Cr Wu was Cr Hindi's running mate for the 2012 Hurstville council elections.
On the day it was set up, Blakehurst Holdings purchased 434 Princes Highway, Blakehurst. Blakehurst Holdings acts as a trustee for the Blakehurst Properties Unit Trust but the beneficiaries of the unit trust are not known.
The Blakehurst waterfront investment is not Malcolm Hindi's first foray into property development.
In August 2013, when he was 19, he paid $650,000 to buy a property in Rosebery Street, Penshurst, from his parents. Two years earlier the Hindis had been trying to sell the property for $879,000.
Before he had sold the property to his son, Cr Hindi put in a development application to Hurstville council. Cr Wu moved the motion that council approve the Hindis' planned development.
Cr Hindi claimed he had sold the property to his son Malcolm with the intention that Malcolm should live in one of the townhouses, and his sister in another.
He also said recent changes to the building code for that part of Penshurst would have allowed him to build three townhouses and a villa on the almost 800-square-metre block.
"I could have made a lot more money but I chose to develop it for my kids," he said at the time.
But 12 months later, his son Malcolm sold one of the new townhouses for $1.395 million. His mother, Miray, a real estate agent, recently handled the sale of the second Rosebery Street townhouse. The price remains undisclosed.
When the Hindis were negotiating to buy a deceased estate in Peake Parade, Peakhurst, towards the end of 2012, the area had been flagged to be rezoned from low density residential to medium or high density. Following its rezoning, in early 2014 the Hindis began negotiating to sell their development property to Peter and Myrna Abdallah's company Peake Industry. During the negotiations the Abdallahs were informed that Rachel Hindi now owned the property.
Land title records show that Con and Miray Hindi sold the property to their daughter on February 2, 2014, for $650,000. Less than a fortnight later, on 17 February, Rachel on-sold to the Abdallahs for $980,000.
Although he had sold them the site, when the Abdallahs put in their development application later that year, Cr Hindi voted to reject it without declaring any conflict of interest. It was later passed.
Cr Hindi, his family and relatives have several other developments on the boil. But the mayor's most controversial development site is at 40 Crump Street, Mortdale.
A spokesman for Local Government minister Paul Toole confirmed that late last week Hurstville Council was notified that the Office of Local Government has launched an investigation into the council's May 20 meeting in which prosecution of Cr Hindi was to be discussed for his failure to remediate the asbestos-riddled Crump Street site. The inquiry will also examine the decision that same night to suspend the general manager who had carriage of the investigation into Cr Hindi's site.
Cr Hindi and Cr Wu did not reply to Fairfax Media's emails or calls. Mrs Hindi, a former Kogarah councillor said, "We have always acted honourably and honestly." She also said "my husband has been very upset by recent articles you have written about him" and that he is contemplating legal action. Five councillors who have recently opposed Cr Hindi in council have also received defamation threats from the mayor.
Son, Malcolm Hindi
Most of us are apathetic about Council elections, and this article gives us a reason to sit up and take notice of what's really going on inside our local Council chambers. And it's outrageous.