‘Victim’ pleads guilty over $3.9m heist from gold buyers

A man who initially claimed he was the victim of an armed robbery at a Melbourne gold buyer has pleaded guilty over his involvement in the $3.9 million heist.

Daniel Ede was working at Melbourne Gold Company’s Collins Street office on April 27 when he was confronted by a man wearing a surgical mask and goggles, who held a gun as he told the staff member to load gold bullion and safes onto a trolley.

The Melbourne Gold Company in the hours after the robbery.
The Melbourne Gold Company in the hours after the robbery.CREDIT:JUSTIN MCMANUS

The gunman, Karl Kachami, bound Ede’s hands with cable ties and left the building with  loot worth $3.9 million, making it one of the most lucrative armed robberies in Victorian history.

But in the weeks after the robbery, police suspected the two men were actually in cahoots and planned the robbery together.

That theory was confirmed on Wednesday when Ede appeared before Melbourne Magistrates Court and pleaded guilty to aggravated robbery and theft. Other charges were struck out.

The 37-year-old was arrested about two weeks after the hold-up and has been in custody ever since.

Karl Kachami pictured in Melbourne in 2007.
Karl Kachami pictured in Melbourne in 2007.CREDIT:ANGELA WYLIE

Kachami, 48, was arrested in the days after the robbery and in August pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary, theft and firearms offences.

He is on bail, having been released from custody in June when a magistrate was told of his health problems, admissions to police and because he led investigators to a property in the Gippsland town of Dollar, where most of the loot was buried.

Police say CCTV footage from inside the Melbourne Gold Company shows Ede directing Kachami, through hand signals and eye movements, to take the gun out of his jacket and where to locate small safes.

The footage, police say, shows Kachami’s Glock pistol had no ammunition magazine.

Previous court hearings were told most of the stolen property was recovered, although $333,240 in cash remained outstanding. It is unclear if that money has since been recovered.

Police and prosecutors have previously described the crime as audacious, well planned and Victoria’s third most lucrative armed robbery.null

Ede and Kachami are due to appear before the County Court later this month.

By : Adam Cooper – THE AGE

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