How Melissa Caddick – whose decomposing foot was found inside a shoe on a New South Wales south coast beach – spent the millions of dollars she fleeced from her wealthy victims has been revealed.
The businesswoman disappeared the day after her $6.1million Dover Heights property was raided by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission on November 11, 2020.
Scouring thousands of pages of financial documents on her seized computers, investigators were able to establish a money trail left behind by the 49-year-old to pinpoint where the funds ended up.
At least $25million is understood to have been stolen from investors by Caddick who spent the cash on lavish holidays, clothes, and dining out
CCTV footage of Caddick wearing the runners in which the remains of the foot were found
At least $25million is understood to have been stolen by Caddick from around 60 investors who fell for her sales pitch that she would make them huge returns.
‘They can see what she has done with the money and it is all but accounted for … It’s been spent on lifestyle,’ a source close to the investigation told The Daily Telegraph.
Her lavish spending includes $229,277 on luxury fashion label Dior, $187,650 on Canturi Jewellers and nearly $50,000 on Chanel.
Her travel was also excessive spending $63,002 on a trip to Fiji and $108,586 on bookings with travel agents Flight Centre.
ASIC had been investigating Caddick for about three months for a range of financial crimes before Australian Federal Police officers conducted the raid on their behalf.
Lawyers for the group of investors are currently working with liquidators to attempt to recover their savings.
However, with a large portion of the money spent on items such as travel and dining out rather than tangible assets, a lot of the stolen cash looks to be gone.
‘There are hundreds of false bank statements, share contracts and share trading statements.’ principal investigator Bruce Gleeson from Jones Partners said.
‘Instead of investing investor funds, the moneys were co-mingled on multiple occasions into accounts operated by the company or Ms Caddick personally, and share transactions did not occur in the name of the investor’.
Caddick’s con to her victims was to show off her extravagant expenses, convincing them she had excellent investment knowledge, and that she had limited places for investors so they had to act quickly.
HOW CADDICK SPENT THE MILLIONS SHE STOLE
Cosmopolitan Shoes: $52,548
Louis Vuitton: $17,777
Canturi Jewellers: $187,650
Oscar De La Renta: $14,180
Personal expenses: $291,744
Flight Centre: $108,586
Hong Kong: $18,877
New York: $37,283
North of Nell: $34,223
A second crime scene has been set up on a beach 150km away from where Melissa Caddick’s decomposing foot was found inside a shoe.
Police were called to Mollymook Beach on the NSW South Coast about 9.30pm on Friday night after walkers found human remains.
The group came across a large piece of stomach flesh which included a belly button, police sources told The Daily Telegraph.
DNA testing will be carried out to see if the new remains belong to the conwoman – whose death was confirmed on Friday.
Caddick vanished from her home in Sydney’s eastern suburbs a day after it was raided by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission on November 11.
Her disappearance sparked wild theories as to her whereabouts, but detectives now believe she either committed suicide or met with foul play.
Human remains including what appeared to be stomach flesh and a belly button have washed ashore on a beach 150km away from where missing Sydney conwoman Melissa Caddick’s (pictured) foot was found
The decomposed foot of Melissa Caddick pictured in the shoe found by campers on the NSW South Coast on Sunday
Police were called to Mollymook Beach at about 9.30pm on Friday night and will conduct DNA testing to see if the remains belong to Melissa Caddick (pictured right with her husband Anthony on the left)
Police were called to Mollymook Beach (stock image) on the NSW South Coast about 9.30pm on Friday night
Police suspect the fraudster took her own life, because she could have reached the Dover Heights clifftops – 300m from her $6.1million home – without being tracked by CCTV cameras.
On Sunday, campers found her rotting foot inside an ASICS Gel Nimbus shoe 50km north of the Bournda National Park.
The group of three teenage campers were near Tathra on Sunday when one of them found the shoe lying on the sand.
When he turned the shoe upside down as he went to throw it out, he discovered there were human remains inside.
Police later used footage from the raid of her home – which had featured vision of her feet – to help identify her as the shoe’s owner.
They have said it is likely Caddick took her own life after her home was raided by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission on November 11, 2020. Pictured: Map shows the distance between where Caddick’s foot was found,where she was last seen and Friday night’s latest discovery
The 49-year-old was accused of swindling at least $20million from clients, including friends and family, before disappearing on November 12.
Days after she was reported missing, NSW Police used modelling to determine where her body might wash up if she had died in the water near her Dover Heights home.
The modelling deemed it possible that her body could have drifted as far south as Bermagui, about one hour north of Bournda.
Yesterday New South Wales Police said they believe Caddick (pictured) suicided but have not ruled out foul play
NSW Police Assistant Commissioner Mick Willing said the modelling was done in the wake of Ms Caddick’s disappearance, as crews conducted extensive land, air and sea searches.
In a sworn statement tendered at the Federal Court, and recently made public, ASIC investigator Isabella Allen alleges Caddick hit her with a barrage of questions when authorities raided her $6.2million Dover Heights mansion on November 11.
Caddick allegedly demanded answers on how she was to abide by a court order freezing her assets.
Those questions includes: When would she have to appear in court? Where would she drop off her passports? Did one order mean she couldn’t use her credit cards, because she used them for all transactions?
Caddick also asked how quickly she had to write up a description of her assets and liabilities, and asked: ‘how am I supposed to do that when you have taken my computers?’
The route from Caddick’s $6.1million home on Wallangra Road in Dover Heights (pictured) to nearby clifftops is believed to not have any CCTV cameras facing the road or street
The 49-year-old (pictured left with husband Anthony on the right) has been accused of swindling at least $20million from clients, including friends and family, before disappearing on November 12
ASIC investigator Isabella Allen alleges Caddick hit her with a barrage of questions when authorities raided her $6.2million Dover Heights mansion on November 11 (pictured is bodycam footage of the raid)
The investigator replied: ‘I am unable to answer that question and it may be best that you speak to a lawyer. Do you have a lawyer?’
It is believed ASIC had been investigating her for three months before the raid.
Caddick is survived by her husband Anthony, a 15-year-old son, parents Barbara and Ted Grimley and brother Adam.
Mr and Ms Grimley are said to be ‘furious at ASIC’ for the death of their daughter.
The conwoman used investors funds to prop up a lavish lifestyle, including extravagant overseas trips and designer items.
Caddick (pictured centre) is survived by her husband Anthony (pictured right), a 15-year-old son, parents Barbara and Ted Grimley and brother Adam.
Her victims were mostly wealthy friends, some of whom invested life savings in Caddick believing they were making returns.
When ASIC and the Australian Federal Police raided the clifftop home, they seized about $1million in couture gowns, designer clothes, handbags, shoes and jewellery.
Corporate watchdog ASIC said on Wednesday the investigation into Caddick and her company would continue as they try and return funds to investors.
‘ASIC’s priority is to seek the return of funds to investors in the most efficient way possible,’ an ASIC spokesperson said.
NSW Police Assistant Commissioner Mick Willing (pictured on Friday) confirmed remains of the missing businesswoman have been found on the NSW far south coast. Also pictured is an exhausted looking Gretchen Atkins (left), the detective who has led the investigation
If Ms Caddick had been found alive, NSW police would have been able to arrest the high-flying financial fraudster.
Liquidators allege the self-styled financial adviser ‘meticulously and systematically’ deceived those who entrusted millions of investment dollars to her over seven years, then used the money to fund her lavish lifestyle.
‘Melissa’s family were informed of the identification last night and are obviously distressed,’ NSW Police Assistant Commissioner Mick Willing told reporters on Friday.
‘Police have always kept an open mind in relation to what the circumstances were for her disappearance, including the fact that Melissa may have taken her own life.’
Campers found a decomposed foot and ASICS shoe washed up on Bournda Beach (pictured) on the NSW far south coast near Tathra
One of the investor victims ripped off by Ms Caddick reacted with shock when told by 2GB breakfast host Ben Fordham.
Cheryl Kraft Reid entrusted almost $1million of her superannuation with Ms Caddick, whom she considered as a friend and last heard from two months prior to her disappearance.
‘Wow, that’s a sad tragic outcome for her son but its also just a sad tragic outcome for us because we just don’t get closure,’ Ms Kraft Reid told the radio program.
‘Besides the news we’re unlikely to see any return of that, it’s pretty devastating.’
‘It’s not just the money, it’s the consequences of what’s happened to us and for the many years we’ve worked for zero returns because she decided to live an entitled and frivolous life.’
Melissa Caddick’s husband Anthony Koletti (pictured left with Melissa) and her family were informed of the confirmation of her remains on Thursday night