Aussie iron ore magnate Rinehart takes her children to court again

Australia's wealthiest woman and mining tycoon, Gina Rinehart, has launched fresh legal actions to try blocking her children from accessing millions of dollars from a new venture between her firm Hancock Prospecting and mining giant Rio Tinto.

The move comes about 18 months after her children — John Hancock and Bianca Rinehart — won control of the family fund. 

The move comes about 17 months after two of her children —John Hancock and Bianca Rinehart — won control of the family fund. It also comes as Hancock Prospecting ramps up production at the Roy Hill iron ore mine in the Pilbara, The Sydney Morning Herald reports.

Rinehart tried blocking her offspring from accessing the Hope Margaret Hancock Trust, set by her father Lang Hancock, by allegedly changing the date they were allowed to do so from 2011 to 2068.

However, NSW Supreme Court Justice Paul Brereton named Bianca as trustee of the fund, which is worth 24% of Hancock Prospecting, also founded by Rinehart’s father.

Hancock and Wright pioneered iron ore exploration in the Pilbara region in the 1950s and '60s. They teamed up with Rio, which gave them access to a private railway to carry ore from the town of Paraburdoo to Dampier, which had a private port.

Gina Rinehart is considered the 51st most powerful woman in the world by Forbes magazine. Her wealth is estimated at $11.4 billion, down from $12.2 billion last year.