Cold case investigators are combing through evidence and re-interviewing witnesses, as they look into the nearly three-decades-old murder of 89-year-old Hugo Benscher on the Gold Coast.
The elderly man was found dead, bound and gagged with a head injury, at his canal-front home in Paradise Point on June 21, 1992, following a spate of burglaries and home invasions in the area.
Homicide detectives have now launched a fresh appeal for information into his murder and are set to travel across the country to question original witnesses again in the coming weeks, as well as talk to some new people identified in a full review of the case this year.
Investigators are calling for anyone with information to come forward, particularly keen to talk to anyone who might have seen a beige Datsun and male driver (comfit and example of car below) seen near Hugo’s home the night of his murder.
Neighbours also thought they heard an outboard motor running around the time of Hugo's death, with police also calling on anyone who noticed a boat in the canal that night to come forward.
Detectives said they were also interested in speaking with anyone who knew Hugo from the Runaway Bay Yacht Club, where he was a regular during the six years he lived on the Gold Coast (canal view of house below).
A $250,000 reward remains in place for information that leads to an arrest and conviction.
Detective Senior Sergeant Tara Kentwell, from the Cold Case Investigation Team, said investigators were confident the renewed focus could see people come forward with new information to solve the case.
“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,” she said.
Hugo, who invented an inflatable ball bladder and valve for sporting equipment, emigrated from Hamburg to Sydney in 1948, where he lived with his wife and sons before retiring to the Gold Coast in 1986 after his wife died.