Tradies begin mediation over $476k ‘treasure’
A LEGAL battle involving two tradies who found hundreds of thousands of dollars buried in a Queensland backyard could be reaching an end as warring parties head to mediation.
Excavator operator Warren Bruggy and labourer Daniel Boyd have been locked in a bitter legal tug-of-war over who should get to keep the loot they found on the Gold Coast last year.
The court action kicked off after the pair dug up $388,850 in old paper notes and a further $100,000 in destroyed notes buried in plastic tubs at a development site at Runaway Bay on October 31 last year.
The Reserve Bank later confirmed that the total buried treasure found at the lot was $476,600.
The tradies, who are staking their claim on the money in the Supreme Court of Queensland, are using the little-known "finders keepers" laws.
The pair were fired by their employer, Shane Gimwood, after taking the money to the police.
Mr Grimwood's company was initially named as a party to the proceedings but this action was later withdrawn.
Several other parties, including a Gold Coast man who claims his father - a travelling chef - buried it to avoid tax and two former owners of the land are also trying to get hold of the money.
The money is sitting in a police bank account ready to be claimed, court documents reveal.
The court fight has already hit a number of legal hurdles with the court temporarily putting a stay on the proceedings, which was later lifted.
The Brisbane Supreme Court on Tuesday heard the parties were set to mediate the case in the hope of finding a resolution.
Developer Morrison Constructions Pty Ltd on Tuesday also applied to have two parties removed from the case, but this was later adjourned.
Lawyers for Morrison argued one of the parties - David Michael Timson - should be removed from the proceedings after an unknown caller contacted the company's lawyers on behalf of the man.
Mr Timson claims he lived on the Runaway Bay property about 40 years ago and may have buried the cash.
It is understood the woman, who has not been identified, believed she was calling the man's own lawyer.
The matter was adjourned until August 26.