Cold case reopened
Cold case reopened

30-year Queensland murder mystery reopened

POLICE are reinvestigating the murder of a wealthy German inventor found bound and gagged with fatal head injuries at his Gold Coast home nearly 30 years ago.

Hugo Benscher was 89 when he was killed in 1992, thought to be the victim of a home invasion gone wrong.

The elderly widower lived in a canalfront home and had a large fishing boat moored at the rear during a time when burglars were targeting canal estates in the area.

Detectives from the Homicide Cold Case Investigation Team and the Gold Coast are re-examining the case and are hopeful of solving it.

 

Hugo Benscher was slain in his canalfront home in 1992.
Hugo Benscher was slain in his canalfront home in 1992.

 

Queensland detectives will be travelling to New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania to interview witnesses in the coming weeks.

Mr Benscher was last seen alive on the morning of Saturday, June 20, 1992 and spoke with someone on the phone at 8pm that night.

 

A comfit of the driver of a Datsun seen in the area
A comfit of the driver of a Datsun seen in the area

 

But the following morning, he was found dead in his home at Paterson Place, Paradise Point.

Neighbours told police they woke to the sounds of loud revving from a boat on the canal on the night of June 20.

A beige-coloured Datson was also seen in the area at the time. Police at the time released an artist's impression of the driver.

Police would like to hear from anyone with information on a boat in the canal around the time of Mr Benscher's murder or anyone who knows about the beige Datsun.

They are also looking for anyone who remembers Mr Benscher from the Runaway Yacht Club, a place frequented.

"Police firmly believe that with public assistance, irrespective of the passage of time, the offenders will be brought to justice, giving Hugo's friends and family some closure," Detective Senior Sergeant Tara Kentwell said.

"In the coming weeks, detectives will travel to New South Wales, Victoria and Tasmania to reinterview original witnesses and to approach new witnesses identified during the review.

 

A beige Datsun was seen near the victim’s home.
A beige Datsun was seen near the victim’s home.

 

"It is our intention through today's appeal to urge anyone with information to come forward."

Mr Benscher was born in Hamburg in 1903 and migrated to Sydney in 1948.

He lived in Sydney with his wife and sons for most of his life but retired to the Gold Coast after his wife died.

He made his fortune with the invention of a seamless inflatable ball bladder with a combined valve - something that is still used in sporting equipment worldwide.

A $250,000 reward is in place for information leading to a conviction.

Crime Stoppers 1800 333 000


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