Mistress ran bordellos for Kerry Packer, biography claims

MELBOURNE - A mistress of businessman Kerry Packer ran private bordellos for his political and business allies, according to a biography re-edited following the media tycoon's death.

Paul Barry's re-edited biography, The Rise and Rise of Kerry Packer, to be released on August 1, will include details of his four-year affair with African-American model Carol Lopes, who committed suicide in 1991.

Details of the affair were left out of the biography's 1993 edition on legal advice, Fairfax newspapers said today.

The affair between Packer and Lopes began in the late 1970s, the report said.

According to the biography, Lopes told friends she was Packer's "SONAP" (sex only, no appearances in public).

She lived in lavish apartments provided by Packer in Elizabeth Bay, Rose Bay and Bellevue Hill (near the Packer residence).

When the affair ended in the early 80s, Lopes organised private summer bordellos for Packer in high-priced rented beach houses at Palm Beach, on Sydney's northern breaches, the biography said.

Lopes sought beautiful, well-educated and intelligent women from New York, London and South America, who were paid A$10,000 ($11,120) a week to work in the bordellos, it said.

Australian politicians and business associates attended the bordellos, Barry wrote, but none were named.

"Carol confided to friends that Kerry ran this private bordello to thank men who had done him a good turn, to pay them back," Barry wrote.

After Packer cut off financial support for Lopes later in the '80s, Lopes attempted suicide several times, succeeding in 1991.

Much of her 16-page suicide note, on file with the NSW coroner's office, was addressed to Packer, the report said.

A second letter found in Lopes' apartment by a friend said: "Kerry Packer is the only family I know. He has taken care of me for 12 years. I have been denied access to this man. For what reason, I don't understand. He is not aware of how distressed I am. I have no alternative but to end my life".

After Packer died in December 2005, it was revealed he had transferred shares in property worth at least A$10 million to long-time mistress and employee Julie Trethowan.

Gerald Stone, in his recently released book Who Killed Channel 9?, said Packer divided the last days between Trethowan and Ros Packer, his wife of more than 40 years and, in his 30s, had a brief, torrid affair with employee Ita Buttrose.

- AAP

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