Alan Bond's Daughter Found Dead

The Age

Friday July 7, 2000

DAVID REARDON

PERTH

Alan Bond's eldest daughter, Susanne, was found dead in her home in the plush Perth suburb of Peppermint Grove yesterday morning after apparently overdosing on prescription drugs.

Police and the coroner's office are investigating her death but said there did not appear to be any suspicious circumstances.

A top showjumper in her younger days, 41-year-old Susanne Kathleen Edwards had returned to Perth on Wednesday from a riding holiday in London.

Mr Bond told The Age last night that his daughter had been ill for a long time, suffering from a rare intolerance to wheat products known as Coeliacs disease.

``It is quite rare and there is no cure for it," Mr Bond said. She had been in and out of hospitals in Perth and London.

``She just died peacefully in her sleep," he said.

Mr Bond said his daughter was in good spirits when she returned from London, where she had spent the past couple of weeks riding during the mid-year break from her studies at Perth's Notre Dame University.

``She has an 18-month-old boy, Charlie. They were having a bath together when I spoke to her on the phone yesterday to organise some tickets to the theatre," Mr Bond said.

Mrs Edwards married and divorced twice but was still close to her second husband, Dr John Edwards.

``He's been a great support to her. While they were divorced, they were the best of friends - it was one of those unusual situations," Mr Bond said.

Mr Bond said his ex-wife Eileen Bond was on her way to Western Australia. Susanne was the second of four children born to the colorful Perth identities. The other children are John, Craig and Jody.

Susanne's first wedding to Armand Leone in 1985 set Perth's social set alight, her proud parents lashing out on marquees and a dance floor on the lawns of their mansion by the Swan River. The couple divorced three years later.

Susanne married Dr Edwards in June 1993 - several months after Mr Bond underwent open heart surgery.

A family friend, who spoke on the condition he not be named, said Susanne was particularly close to her father.

``Obviously Alan was close to all his children but certainly he and Susanne were very very close. He'll be absolutely devastated by this," the friend said.

From an early age she was a player in her father's complex business world. She was listed in 1981 as a director of the Susanne Bond Trading Trust and the Susanne Bond Investment Trust and lived at 393-hectare Hertfordshire estate called Upp Hall which became a target for investigators chasing millions of dollars when Mr Bond's financial empire collapsed.

A sworn testimony by her first husband, Armand Leone, provided much of the inside evidence about the Bond family's network of financial deals, many of which involved Swiss national Jurg Bollag. Mr Bollag paid more than $1.2 million for showjumping horses for Susanne Bond, and $700,000 for jewellery. -- with AAP

© 2000 The Age

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