Documents reveal millions owed to JM Kelly’s creditors

DOZENS of Central Queensland businesses are listed among hundreds of unsecured creditors worth over $2.7 million, according to documents provided by directors of the business formerly known as JM Kelly Project Builders.

The amounts listed in the report as being owed to local companies range from as little as $25 to $185,522.80.

The list was outlined in the summary of affairs of Collhart Investments Pty Ltd provided to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) and signed by the company's director Geoff Murphy.

Mick Barfield, owner of Mackay Labour Hire, has spent the week in Rockhampton displaying prominent signs claiming he is also owed money by JM Kelly Project Builders.

This debt is not listed in the ASIC documents, but The Morning Bulletin understands this is because the matter is still before the District Court, with judgement pending on a three-day trial which ran in Mackay in June.

Last month, the Rockhampton businessman announced three companies, which formed part of the JM Kelly Group, would be liquidated.

This included JM Kelly Project Builders, which is now known as Collhart Investments.

A second ASIC report, signed by Mr Murphy on June 20, lists an estimated deficiency of $22,095,002 for the company.

Craig Barlow, from The Barlow Group Pty Ltd, says his business is among those owed money by Collhart Investments dating back three years.

Although he recognises his debt is old, Mr Barlow said it is still within the legal period for claims to be processed.

A creditor's meeting about the liquidation was held in Brisbane on Wednesday.

Mr Barlow attended via teleconference and was one of several appointed to a Committee of Inspection which the majority of those attending the meeting voted in favour of establishing.

The committee will liaise with the liquidators as they examine how the company became insolvent.

Mr Barlow said he put his hand up for the committee because he knew several young tradespeople who were on the unsecured creditors list and didn't have the time or experience to be involved in the process.

"A lot of them still have got to go to work to try and cover themselves," he said.

"It's not a personal thing, it's just business. You've got to help these people."

The meeting also considered whether the liquidator would be allowed to "destroy the books and records" of the company, six months after the completion of the process.

Mr Barlow said that motion was opposed and defeated after a vote.

When contacted by The Morning Bulletin, Mr Murphy declined to comment and directed all enquiries to the liquidators.

The liquidator was unavailable for comment yesterday.