Shock jock broadcaster Derryn Hinch has labelled Geoffrey Edelsten a ‘crook’ a day after he died alone in his Melbourne apartment.
Edelsten, who is believed to have turned into a recluse in recent months, was found dead in his Melbourne apartment on Friday by his cleaner.
His death is not being considered suspicious.
Hinch, 77, said he was not impressed by the wealthy businessman’s outlandish persona, expensive suits and string of marriages to glamorous and much younger women.
‘He really was a Barnum character. He dressed in the flashy bright coloured suits, journalists went along with it. He was always good for a photo op,’ the ex-senator said according to The Herald Sun.
Geoffrey Edelsten was found dead in his Melbourne apartment on Friday (pictured with third wife Gabi Grecko at the public service for Tom Hafey at Melbourne Cricket Ground on May 19, 2014)
Veteran broadcaster Derryn Hinch called the flamboyant businessman a ‘criminal’ on Saturday and said he ‘wouldn’t know a principle if he fell over it’
‘He was a colourful character but he was a crook. I don’t apologise because all history owes the dead is the truth.’
Edelsten, a renowned medical practitioner, made much of his later fortune founding Allied Medical Group in 2005, a chain of flashy 24-hour medical centres featuring typically extravagant decor including chandeliers, grand pianos, and fur-lined consultation rooms.
They were the first clinics in Australia to bulk-bill to Medicare costing patients almost nothing out-of-pocket for appointments.
His first clinic was reportedly seeing 2,000 patients each week within four months of opening. By the time he had 13 medical centres, about 20,000 people were walking through the doors every seven days.
They displaced neighbourhood GPs as the norm and were forerunners for the now common corporate medial clinics.
In 2012 his estimated fortune was more than $60million with a large chunk spent on mansions, a fleet of luxury cars, and helicopters.
Nearly two decades before building Allied Medical he was de-registered as a doctor in NSW in 1988 and later in Victoria.
Brynne and Geoffrey Edelsten at the Myer marquee in the Birdcage on Victoria Derby Day at Flemington racecourse in 2012. Brynne was his second wife and they married in a glitzy $3million wedding ceremony in 2009
Edelsten pictured in a Sydney Swans file photo with first wife Leanne. He made his money pioneering revolutionary 24-hour medical centres offering bulk-billing, so that patients bore no financial cost
Edelsten’s last two years were believed to have been relatively quiet, increasingly spent as a recluse in the Balencea Apartments on St Kilda Road (pictured with Gabi Grecko)
Geoffrey Edelsten’s shattered ex-wife Gabi Grecko – who was 46 years his junior – shares bizarre messages hours after the flamboyant doctor died alone inside his apartment at age 78
Geoffrey Edelsten’s ex-wife has posted a series of heartbreaking messages to her social media just hours after his death.
His heartbroken ex Gabi Grecko has since taken to Instagram to share her grief. She posted two paparazzi photos of herself alongside Edelsten, with one captioned ‘This is how I feel today’.
In another post she chose the caption ‘tired’ to illustrate her grief.
It’s understood the pair were only together for a few months prior to his death.
The photos showed a visibly downcast Grecko walking through the streets of Sydney with Edelsten, who is 46 years her senior.
Australian businessman and one-time AFL owner Geoffrey Edelsten has died at the age of 78. Edelsten is pictured with his third wife Gabi Grecko
He then spent a year in jail in 1990 for perverting the course of justice after he hired underworld figure Christopher Dale Flannery to assault a former patient.
‘The man would not have seen a principle if he had fallen over it,’ Hinch said on Saturday.
Edelsten was a symbol of the extravagant attitude of the 80s having acquired money from previous medical clinic ventures before Allied Medical.
He bought the Sydney Swans football club in 1985 for $2.9million making him a house-hold name.
Brynne Edelsten married Geoffrey Edelsten in a $3million wedding in 2009. She was 27 at the time and he was 67
He would regularly be pictured in gaudy sunglasses and expensive shoulder-padded suits next to his first wife Leanne Nesbitt who was a 19-year-old model when they met.
On her 21st birthday he bought her a convertible and a helicopter.
Edelsten, a great self-publicist, was married three times to much younger women – Ms Nesbitt in 1984; American fitness instructor Brynne Gordon in 2009 and then to another model, New York based Gabi Grecko, in 2015.
His wedding to Ms Gordon was a star-studded affair at Melbourne’s Crown Casino, attended by celebrities including Seinfeld’s Jason Alexander, Margot Robbie, Kerri-Anne Kennerley and Fran Drescher – costing $3.3million.
The glamorous nuptials included a helicopter, circus performers and a luxury Bentley.
Edelsten bought his first wife, Leanne Nesbitt, a sports car and a helicopter for her 21st birthday
Edelsten was the first private owner of a major AFL team when he bought the Swans for $2.9million in 1985. He is pictured in a cover photo for Good Weekend
Nesbitt was a 19-year-old model when she first met the businessman. They tied the knot in 1984 but split in 1988
The marriage lasted five years before Mrs Edelsten had enough of her ‘publicity-obsessed’ husband, claiming it was ‘a very lonely marriage’.
Edelsten’s last two years were believed to have been relatively quiet, increasingly spent as a recluse in the Balencea Apartments on St Kilda Road.
As his health faded, Edelsten had few visitors and is believed to have been found in his apartment by his cleaner. His death is not being treated as suspicious.
‘The only people who would come to visit him last year were his brother, his close family and his carers,’ a neighbour told the Herald Sun, also describing him as ‘an old-school gentleman’.
Edelsten and his first wife Leanne on August 5, 1985 next to their Porsche after buying the Sydney Swans
Edelsten was born in Carlton in Melbourne’s inner-north in 1943, the son of Jewish immigrants Hymie and Esther, who owned a lingerie boutique.
He went to primary school in Carlton North and secondary school in Burwood before earning a double degree in medicine and surgery at the University of Melbourne.
The enterprising young trainee doctor spent any spare time he had managing Melbourne bands, writing music and trying to get an emerging record label, Hit Productions, off the ground.