A businesswoman who disappeared from her clifftop mansion without a trace would not have left her family without saying anything, a close friend has claimed.
Melissa Caddick, 49, is believed to have left her $7 million home at Dover Heights, in Sydney’s east, about 5.30am on Thursday, November 13, without her phone or purse.
The mother-of-one’s disappearance came less than 24 hours after Australian Federal Police officers had searched her home as part of an investigation into her business.
Ms Caddick’s husband Anthony Koletti and her brother Adam Grimley made a public appeal for information last week, with police admitting they are no closer to finding her.
One of Ms Caddick’s close friends Lucia Del Prete told Daily Mail Australia she was at a loss to explain what had happened.
Police are continuing to search for missing Dover Heights businesswoman Melissa Caddick
Ms Caddick (in both photos with husband Anthony Koletti) is believed to have left her Dover Heights mansion about 5.30am on Thursday, November 13 to go for a run. She has not been seen since and police admit they are at a loss to explain what might have happened to her
CCTV cameras at the $7 million mansion where Ms Caddick lived with Mr Koletti (pictured) and her son were not working on the morning she went missing
Ms Del Prete said while the search for answers continues, she finds it highly unlikely her friend would have disappeared without a word.
‘She’s not the type of person who would do something so random,’ Ms Del Prete said.
‘Melissa and I are really good friends. It is a shock, we are all shocked. It is just so sad for her family.’
Police are continuing to search for clues and are understood to have followed up on several leads in the days since the public appeal.
A key part of the investigation into Ms Caddick’s movements after she left her home was expected to be CCTV footage from the front yard.
But detectives last week revealed they were having difficulties accessing the footage due to complications that are believed to have been caused with the CCTV system in the AFP raid.
Eastern Suburbs detective inspector Gretchen Atkins said the camera was not in use when she left on Thursday and no other cameras in the area appeared to have got a glimpse of her either.
‘We have had some issues getting the CCTV at this point in time, its still a process and we are not sure if it has actually recorded,’ Det Insp Atkins said.
‘Wednesday was the last time we know it (the CCTV at the home) did record.
‘Unfortunately we haven’t (had any luck with CCTV). Neighbours have been trying to help us as much as they can.
‘At this point in time we don’t (have any leads), we are just trying to piece together Melissa’s final movements that we’re aware of and that’s why we are doing an appeal.
‘We don’t have any locations that we know that she’s been, she hasn’t attended appointments that she had, which is why we’re really concerned.
Mr Koletti (centre) made a public appeal for information on Friday alongside her brother Adam Grimley (right)
Mr Koletti said his wife’s teenage son heard her walk out the front door about 5.30am, but they later discovered she had left behind her phone, keys and wallet, which was out of the ordinary
An emotionally drained Mr Koletti takes a moment after answering questions during Friday’s public appeal for help
‘She doesn’t have her phone and she doesn’t have any access to bank accounts.’
Det Insp Atkins also admitted police are now treating Ms Caddick’s disappearance as ‘suspicious’.
In addition to searching for CCTV footage from the Wallangra Road area, police have searched along the cliffs at Dover Heights and The Gap – a known suicide spot.
At the public appeal last Friday, Mr Koletti said he had last seen his wife as they went to bed on Wednesday night.
Everything had been ‘as normal’ and the next morning she got up to go for her usual run about 5.30am.
Mr Koletti said he was asleep at the time but Ms Caddick’s teenage son is understood to have been in the home’s gym at the time and heard the front door shut as she left.
The pair later found her belongings were still at home and began to sense something was wrong.
‘She always took her phone, in this case it is the only time since I’ve known her that she did not take her phone with her,’ Mr Koletti said.
Despite admitting things appeared out of the ordinary, Mr Koletti did not report his wife missing until the next day.
In addition to searching for CCTV footage from the Wallangra Road area, police have searched along the cliffs at Dover Heights (pictured) and The Gap – a known suicide spot
A day before she went missing, Ms Caddick had her home raided by Australian Federal Police over an investigation into her business dealings
Mr Koletti (pictured at Bondi Police Station with Mr Grimley) has been interviewed by police on several occasions as part of their routine investigations into Ms Caddick’s disappearance
That report was made after Ms Caddick failed to attend a Federal Court hearing over her alleged business dealings.
Fearing she would not show up Mr Koletti attended court on her behalf and was told by court staff he should make a police report.
TIMELINE OF MELISSA CADDICK’S DISAPPEARANCE:
Wednesday, November 11:
– Australian Federal Police perform a daytime raid on Ms Caddick’s home at Dover Heights over her business
– Midnight: Ms Caddick’s husband Anthony Koletti goes to sleep next to his wife, the last time he sees her
Thursday, November 12:
– Ms Caddick gets up at 5.30am, the time of her usual run. Her teenage son is in the home gym at the time and hears the front door shut, but does not see her
Friday, November 13:
– Ms Caddick does not return home and a worried Mr Koletti attends the Federal Court where his wife is due to hand in her passport as part of the AFP investigation into her
– After attending the court in her absence, Mr Foletti is encouraged to report her missing and police attend their home to take a statement
Tuesday, November 17:
– NSW Police reveal for the first time that Ms Caddick is missing
Friday, November 20:
– Mr Koletti and Ms Caddick’s brother Adam Grimley make a public appeal for help in the search for her
‘I was advised to contact (police) within 24 hours and I did.’
Mr Grimley urged the ‘communities’ frequented by Ms Caddick to help in the search for her whereabouts.
‘Melissa, please let us know that you’re safe and sound, we love you,’ her emotional older brother said.
‘To our communities we need your help to bring Melissa, my little sister, home.
‘She is a loving person, a loving mother and a great sister. It is very out of character.’
Neighbours said plain-clothed police removed laptops, files and documents in bags of evidence from her home last Wednesday.
That same day, Ms Caddick was hit with a stringent court order banning her from leaving the country, ordering her not to sell any property and demanding she not transfer money offshore from her 17 bank accounts.
ASIC took Ms Caddick to the Federal Court and successfully had her banned from selling, mortgaging or disposing of her assets.
She was ordered not to send her own money – contained in a lengthy list of 17 different bank accounts – offshore.
Justice Jayne Jagot also ordered she surrender ‘the name, physical address, email address and phone number of each person who currently has funds deposited’ with her company for investment purposes, plus the location and amount of that money.
Ms Caddick was warned that if she disobeyed the orders she would be ‘liable to imprisonment, sequestration of property or other punishment’.
An ASIC spokeswoman declined to explain why Ms Caddick was under investigation as the agency’s probe is ‘ongoing’.
Neighbours said they were stunned by last week’s raid, telling Daily Mail Australia she and her husband kept to themselves.
Residents on the Wallangra Road block had set up a WhatsApp group to check in on each other in the wake of the Covid-19 outbreak. The missing woman and her husband were the only household not involved, the neighbor claimed.
‘We know pretty much the whole block except them, it’s very weird.
‘You’d see him (Mr Koletti, a DJ) out the front occasionally, but most of the time you only hear him revving his car or the music blaring.’
Neighbours told Daily Mail Australia they saw police attend the property twice last week. First, undercover agents – believed to be AFP – executed a search warrant on Wednesday, before on Friday NSW Police arrived (above) to investigate Ms Caddick’s disappearance
CCTV cameras above the garage of the home should have captured Ms Caddick leaving, but they were not working at the time
Ms Caddick was last seen after midnight last Thursday. NSW Police detectives believe she left home about 5.30am that morning, dressed in her jogging gear.
A neighbour told Daily Mail Australia the couple ‘seemed very happy, she seemed to be a successful businesswoman and she had a son who lived with her and with the dad.
‘It’s just odd… we’re all a bit shocked that something like that could happen around here.’
The eagle-eyed local took a photo when NSW Police officers showed up at the house on Friday, just three days after the home was raided. This time, they were there to try and find a missing person.
Ms Caddick is described as Caucasian, 165cm tall, slim build and has long brown hair. She was last seen wearing a black singlet top and leggings, and silver ‘Nike’ sneakers.
Anyone with information about Ms Caddick’s whereabouts is urged to contact NSW Police. Her ASIC court case returns to the Federal Court for hearing on November 27.
For 24 hour crisis support in Australia, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.