Investors with Melissa Caddick lost close to $25m, according to a redacted report into her financial affairs, as police continue to search for her body.
An investor confirmed to Guardian Australia that a report provided by the court-appointed provisional liquidators Jones Partners contained the figure, which is almost double early estimates provided by the corporate regulator, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.
Investors were warned before being provided with the report that releasing or publicly commenting on it could amount to contempt, given that the case between Asic and Caddick remains before the federal court. The $25m figure contained in the report was first reported by the Sydney Morning Herald.
The report provided insights into how Caddick spent the money, the investor said, but urged the court to appoint Jones Partners as liquidators and receivers so they could more thoroughly investigate her and her company Maliver than was possible on a provisional basis.
Caddick disappeared in November, within hours of Asic and the Australian federal police raiding her $6m house in the exclusive Sydney suburb of Dover Heights.
Last Friday it was confirmed that a decomposed foot found in a shoe on 21 February in the Bournda national park on the New South Wales south coast matched DNA from Caddick.
Asic alleges that the 49-year-old misappropriated millions of dollars in investor funds through Maliver, the financial services company she operated without a licence.
She was suspected of signing on clients to manage their investments, while secretly transferring their money to her bank accounts to fund her own luxurious lifestyle.
In court documents, Asic has previously claimed that more than 60 people were suspected to have lost about $13.1m investing with Caddick. But lawyers for some investors who completed their own analysis claimed this year that $25m was lost and even that “could be an extremely conservative assumption”.
A search for Caddick’s remains near her home was expected to take place on Thursday, with rough conditions preventing divers from entering the water earlier this week.
Police assessed the conditions on Wednesday but determined it was too dangerous for divers to enter the water.
Police also confirmed on Wednesday that several sets of remains found at a number of south coast beaches do not belong to the woman.
The discovery of the foot last month was followed by other remains washing up nearby, but those finds do not match Caddick’s DNA. Analysis of the other remains continues.
with Australian Associated Press