Accused’s new twist on Triads
A FORMER restaurateur accused of organising the murder of his brother-in-law has told a jury that the Woollahra doctor was involved with the Triads organised crime gangs. Mark Caleo, 55, has denied ordering the murder of his wife, Rita Caleo, in 1990 and her brother, Dr Michael Chye, in 1989. He told the Supreme Court yesterday that Dr Chye, who was shot dead in the garage of his Woollahra home, was a “pathetic gambler” who treated criminals for cash at his surgery and had lots of enemies and debts.
Caleo at first told the jury he was reluctant to talk about his brother-in-law’s past.
Then later in his defence, Caleo said: “Michael ... said that he was involved with the Triads.”
Crown prosecutor Margaret Cunneen SC said: “A boy who went to Chatswood High School in the ’70s and studied medicine here?”
Caleo replied: “Yes ... quite often he would come to us and let us know that his life was in danger.”
Dr Chye had bought a $3 million waterfront Blakehurst estate from Dr Ameen Bham and then sold it at auction to Mark Caleo in 1989.
The Crown alleges that Caleo had Dr Chye killed after that real estate deal went wrong. The trial before Justice Robert Hulme continues.