Woman charged with $86 million fraud over Viking Group collapse: Midday roundup

A woman has been charged with an $86 million fraud after a police investigation into the collapse of the Viking Group transport company.

Victoria Police fraud and extortion detectives arrested a 51-year-old Melbourne woman yesterday and charged her with four offences, including three counts of obtaining a financial advantage by deception that relate to $33.55 million and one count of attempting to obtain a financial advantage by deception of $53 million.

The woman has been bailed and is expected to face the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on Monday. Police said the investigation into the collapse was continuing.

Viking Group was put into liquidation in 2011.  The transport group was founded in 1970 and employed more than 300 people across four divisions before its collapse. 

House prices on the up across Australia

Australian house prices have risen across Australia by 0.3% in February, with Melbourne recovering from a two-year slump.

Melbourne house prices were up 1.5%, but the largest gains were in Canberra where the market was up 1.9% and Darwin which was up 2.3%, according to the latest figures from analysts RP Data Rismark. Sydney’s home prices appreciated by 0.1%.

Prices in Perth, Adelaide, Hobart and Brisbane fell between 0.8 and 1.1%.

Shares post early losses

Australian shares have posted early losses influenced by falls in the resources sector and a minor drop in the US market.

The S&P/ASX200 benchmark was down 25.8 points to 5078.3 at midday. The material industry was down 139 points to 10,598.7.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 20.88 points lower at 14054.49 last night.

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