Australia's newest billionaire, a mystery man on drug charges

Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Ascot Racecourse

A 29-year-old Queenslander has been revealed as the billionaire Australia didn’t know it had.

We only know about Phillip Johnathan Harrison, a carpenter and brick layer by trade who lives on Sunshine Coast, because he was pulled over by police.

And in the car, police allegedly found 12 grams of ice worth around $12,000. Harrison says he is a recreational ice user, according to police who said he was behaving strangely.

In the Roma Street Magistrate’s Court, police opposed bail on mental health grounds because Harrison claimed to be a billionaire.

However, Nick Handly, Harrison’s lawyer, told the court he had seen $596 million in cash in a Commonwealth Bank account when his client logged into it online.

“It’s one of the most bizarre cases I have ever come across,” Hanly told Magistrate Anthony Gett.

Harrison says he is a billionaire with the money coming from investments, ideas in cars, apps and trade. He says he has $1.2 million in property and a share portfolio.

He is on bail and is due back in court on April 18 to face drugs charges and one of unlawful use of a motor vehicle.

His exact net worth is still clouded but if he has $1.2 billion that would put him about 23rd on Australia’s rich list, ahead of media magnate Kerry Stokes and clothing retailer Solomon Lew.

According to Forbes, the cash alone would put make the 47th richest.

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