Mystery behind Melissa Caddick's severed foot explained: 'Highly unlikely'

The severed foot of missing fraudster Melissa Caddick could have travelled from Sydney cliffs before washing up on the NSW south coast months later, an ocean expert has revealed.

Ms Caddick went missing from her Dover Heights home in Sydney's east in November 2020, a day after ASIC executed a search warrant for her mansion. She was reported missing by her husband Anthony Koletti two days later.

But on February 21, a group of people discovered a running shoe containing human remains while walking along Bournda Beach, on the NSW South Coast.

The discovery led authorities to believe she might be dead. However, the remainder of her body hasn't been located.

Missing fraudster Melissa Caddick
The severed foot of Melissa Caddick washed up at a NSW beach months after her disappearance. Source: Seven News/NSW Police

An examination of goose barnacles found on the foot show it was likely floating off the coast for three to seven days before washing up on Bournda beach — some 400km from Ms Caddick's Dover Heights mansion.

Oceanographer David Griffin told the inquest it was possible her body entered the water when she was last seen in November 2020, then floated close to the ocean floor in strong currents for about 93 days before resurfacing in February 2021.

"The NSW coast is the most energetic oceanographic part of Australia," Dr Griffin told the inquest.

"It is highly unlikely anything can just drift along the continental shelf without getting caught or snagged."

Husband 'confused' by line of questioning

Dr Griffin presented his evidence earlier than expected on Wednesday when Ms Caddick's husband was stood down from his second day in the witness box after saying he couldn't understand the "confusing" questions.

"Your questions are confusing, the way you talk is not the way my mind works," Mr Koletti said.

Earlier he told counsel assisting Jason Downing SC that on the morning of November 12, 2020 when Ms Caddick disappeared he assumed she had gone out to do some exercise.

"I didn't think anything of it ... she's just gone for a walk which she does every day, not a problem," he told police in an interview.

However, in evidence Mr Koletti agreed that his wife had no habits, her exercise regime was irregular and she mostly jogged on the treadmill by that stage.

Mr Downing continued questioning Mr Koletti on Wednesday about this inconsistency, asking if he was now trying to justify his answers.

"One of the accounts must not be true," Mr Downing said.

By Mr Kolletti replied, "I am so confused by your questions."

Missing fraudster Melissa Caddick with husband Anthony Koletti and note
The conwoman's husband Anthony Koletti left her a note and a gift after their mansion was raided. Source: Facebook/Nine News

Note and gift left for Melissa Caddick after raid

Mr Koletti previously told the inquest he has always been truthful but admitted there may have been moments when his concern or worry for his wife confounded his mind.

He said he had no inkling his wife was defrauding family and friends of millions of dollars, nor did he ask her why federal police or the corporate watchdog was suddenly searching their Sydney eastern suburbs home on November 11.

Following the raid, Mr Kolletti left his wife a note and a gift which he detailed in a 110-page affidavit, it's been reported.

He left the earring and the hand-written note on top of her phone, and he "wanted to give them to her as I was concerned about her wellbeing," he revealed.

"Melissa, I no (sic) our love is deeper than pocessions (sic). Thought you might like one of your Christmas (sic) early," the note written on a pink piece of paper said.

"The note and earrings were intended to make her feel better. The earrings were not confiscated as they were not located in Melissa's office on the day of the execution of the warrant," the affidavit reportedly said.

with AAP

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