A multi-millionaire hedge fund founder living in the United Kingdom has been allowed to skip out on mandatory hotel quarantine after three days to attend his father’s funeral.
Hilton Nathanson arrived in Perth on August 6 on a Qatar Airways flight from London via Doha and immediately entered a state-run quarantine facility, news.com.au understands.
But today, the 51-year-old Australian was allowed to temporarily leave the hotel to travel to Guildford Cemetery for the funeral service of his father, Marshall.
Mr Nathanson, the chairman and founding partner of Marble Bar Asset Management, was granted a compassionate exemption by the West Australian government under strict conditions, such as wearing a mask and remaining a safe distance from other attendees, news.com.au understands.
Hotel quarantine is managed by WA Health, which directed inquiries by news.com.au today to police, saying “exemptions … are handled by WA Police”.
WA Police did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
Premier Mark McGowan’s office declined to comment specifically on Mr Hilton’s circumstances for privacy reasons but clarified that anyone entering the state from overseas must complete mandatory hotel quarantine for a period of 14 days, except those from New Zealand.
“The Commonwealth government is responsible for international arrivals,” a government spokesperson added.
Hotel quarantine arrangements, including policing matters such as exemption management, are not the responsibility of federal authorities.
Mr Nathanson’s exemption to leave a quarantine facility was granted by the WA government and he was permitted one hour to attend the funeral and return.
Mr Nathanson was born and raised in Perth and remains well known there in business and charity circles. He has lived in the UK since the 1990s and his fund, Marble Bar, named after the hottest town in Australia, manages tens of billions of dollars for its clients.
In 2015, Mr Nathanson himself featured on a UK rich list with an estimated worth of more than $A400 million, making him one of the wealthiest hedge fund managers in Britain.
Australia’s strict border measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19 are the subject of growing controversy, especially from those citizens and permanent residents stuck abroad and unable to return.
State hard borders have also been responsible for preventing Australians from attending the bedsides of gravely ill loved ones and the funerals of family members.