Notorious Australian conman Peter Foster, who was arrested last year while hiding out at Ewingsdale near Byron Bay, says claims he tried to hire a hit man to murder a private investigator are a complete hoax.
Queensland Police confirmed on Wednesday the 53-year-old was being investigated, with media reports alleging he attempted to arrange the murder of private investigator Ken Gamble in the Philippines.
Fairfax Media has reported detectives obtained an audio recording in which the convicted fraudster allegedly offered $80,000 to have Mr Gamble killed.
However, Foster strongly denies the claims, saying some “rather devious people” in the Philippines had made the recordings.
‘The alleged conversations never took place and are a total fabrication,’ he told AAP on Wednesday night.
‘These alleged recordings have clearly not been scientifically and forensically tested by the police. When they are they will be proven to be a hoax.’
When asked why someone would fabricate the recordings, he said he couldn’t comment on legal grounds.
Detectives raided a home at Ewingsdale and another in Queensland linked to Mr Foster earlier this week, but no arrests were made.
Mr Gamble works as a private detective for more than 100 investors of a failed online gambling firm allegedly run by Mr Foster while he was on the run from police.
Nine’s A Current Affair has reported Foster fleeced investors of more than $10 million through the ponzi scheme called the Sports Trading Club.
Two years ago he was ordered to serve 18 months of a three-year prison sentence for flouting a court-ordered ban on participating in the weight-loss industry.
It was over his $6 million SensaSlim oral diet spray scam.
But Foster went on the run and evaded authorities for a year, pretending to be in Fiji when he was holed up at Ewingsdale, disguised as an ageing hippie.
Following his high-profile arrest last year, he’d been due to remain in the Brisbane Correctional Centre until mid-2016, but he was released early after spending one year behind bars.