Gina Rinehart Children Sue Mother for Billions in Family Trust

Three children of Asia's richest woman, Gina Rinehart, have rejected her demand for mediation over their family trust dispute, where they may be entitled to millions.

Of Rinehart's four children, the three eldest are suing to oust their mother as a trustee, while claiming she treats them with "disdain" and "arrogance," according to The Daily Telegraph.

Lang Hancock, Rinehart's father, created the Hope Margaret Hancock Trust for the benefit of his grandchildren, Bloomberg reported. The trust holds 23.45 percent of the voting shares of Hancock Prospecting, the family's iron ore and coal company, and receives dividends from it.

Hope Rinehart Welker, Bianca Rinehart and John Langley Hancock want their mother, the iron ore magnate, replaced as head of the family trust.

"Her conduct has been such that the plaintiffs have no confidence that there is any scope for improvement on this fundamental point," they said in written submissions following the mediation rejection.

Gina Rinehart, 58, secretly extended the vesting date of the trust to the year 2068, spurring her children to file the claim, which also alleged that their mother acted "deceitfully" and "with gross dishonesty."

The three filed their claim in September, one day before they were scheduled to receive proceeds from the trust where they may have received at least $1 billion each.

"Suggestions that Mrs. Rinehart threatened any of John Hancock, Hope Rinehart Welker or Bianca Rinehart with bankruptcy are incorrect and offensive," Rinehart's lawyer, Paul McCann, wrote in a statement.

Rinehart's wealth has more than doubled in the past year with soaring demands for coal and iron ore from China making her mining coal assets even more valuable. Her current net worth is $20.2 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. With that wealth, each of Rinehart's children would have a stake of about $1.18 billion.

Rinehart's youngest daughter, Ginia, has sided with her mother in the trust dispute.

The case was adjourned until next month.


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