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Guest Character Profiles > Dennis Dimato David Serafin

Dennis Dimato 2015, 2016
Occupation: Businessman, Criminal

Having acquired the building that housed Grease Monkeys restaurant and the local antique shop, businessman Dennis Dimato found himself in Erinsborough, and decided that a quick way to get to know the local people might be to attend a VIP event, thrown by mayor Paul Robinson, to mark the upcoming Erinsborough Festival. However, when former detective Mark Brennan overheard their conversation, he made a call to an old colleague, and then told Paul's assistant Naomi Canning that Dennis was under investigation for illegal business practices. Not wanting the festival to be tarnished, Paul agreed with Naomi's suggestion that they turn down Dennis' offer of sponsorship, but Dennis was unimpressed when he found out. Desperate to make contacts, e then attempted to bribe Naomi to get his name back onto the list, and was pleased when she accepted his envelope of cash, only for her to have second thoughts and return it to him the next day. He was further annoyed to realise that Naomi had been telling people about the bribe, and that Brennan had been asking questions about him all over town, and he warned Naomi that, if she didn't learn to keep her mouth shut, she was going to regret ever meeting him.

Brennan encouraged Naomi to take the matter to the police, and it wasn't long before Sergeant Matt Turner told her that they'd found a few other people telling similar stories about Dimato, and they would need a formal statement from her if they were going to stop him. However, when Naomi went to make her statement, she was told that the other complainants had withdrawn their statements, seemingly due to threats from Dimato. Naomi considered backing down too, particularly when Dimato made veiled threats about her mother Sheila, who was recovering from a heart attack. Naomi was further concerned when she found that all of her mum's gnomes had been smashed in the back garden, and eventually realised that she had to tell her mum and nephew Kyle what had been going on. Sheila made it clear that she wasn't going to be intimidated and then Naomi, with the full support of the Canning family behind her, went back to the police station and made a statement.

After managing to employ local cop Matt Turner as a security guard in an attempt to get him on side, Dimato then turned his attentions to Brennan's younger brother Tyler, who'd just started working at the garage opposite Grease Monkeys. Realising that he'd be another useful person to have on side, Dimato managed to convince Tyler to work for him, stripping stolen cars for parts. When Tyler realised that the first car he was due to strip, a Ford Capri, belonged to his friend Imogen and it had recently been stolen, he went to Dimato and asked if he could buy it from him. Dimato then surprised Tyler by telling him that he could keep the car, and the money he'd been paid to strip it, but he now owed him a very big favour. Matt then also started causing a headache for Dimato when he witnessed him discussing his illegal activities and threatened to go to the police. Dimato knew that Matt wouldn't be that stupid, however, reminding him that it would mean that he would lose his second income, which would lead to his family becoming homeless. When Matt then found $10,000 in cash in his letter box, he lied to his family that it was back pay, due to a computer error at work. But when Mark, who'd just returned to the police force, found out that Matt was lying, he followed him and spotted him meeting with Dimato, telling him that he could no longer work for him and accepting a 'severance package' of another few thousand dollars.

Matt was then forced to confess everything to Mark, who struggled with his conscience but then suggested that Matt should take six months' long service leave, and tell him everything he knew about Dimato and his operations. Word soon got back to Dimato that Mark had been asking questions about him, and so he called in his favour with Tyler, asking him to speak to his brother and find out what he knew. When Tyler returned to Dimato, all he could say was that the police operation had so far been unable to pin anything on him, but Dimato wasn't satisfied with that and told Tyler to start searching Mark's belongings and to find out exactly what was going on - warning Tyler that he didn't want Dennis Dimato as an enemy. The following week, Dennis called in his favour with Tyler, giving him a 'shopping list' of cars that he needed him to steal. Though reluctant, particularly with Mark back on the police force, Tyler agreed to do it, hopeful that if he could repay his debt, he might finally be free of Dimato's grasp. After Dimato and his mates caused more upset and gatecrashed Matt Turner's wake, Mark became more determined to bring him down and, after a tip-off, trackers were planted in some cars around the area. One of them was soon stolen, and Mark and several other officers followed it to Dimato's container yard, with Mark unaware that the thief was actually Tyler. When the police swooped, Tyler managed to avoid capture by hiding in a bin, but Dimato was caught and taken away for questioning. However, rather than smugly telling Mark that one of the car thieves was his own little brother, Dimato refused to give anything away, simply demanding a lawyer.

When Dimato was released on bail a few days later, he immediately went to the garage to see Tyler, furious that he'd done a runner from the crime scene and suspecting that he might have been the one who tipped off Mark about the stolen cars. Tyler insisted that he was innocent, but that he wanted nothing more to do with Dimato. Unfortunately for Tyler, it wasn't that simple, as Dimato felt that he was now owed a favour, suggesting that they could use the garage as a cover for the stolen cars from now on. When Tyler then let slip that the garage was on the market and he might not even be working there for much longer, Dimato saw an opportunity, getting one of his associates to buy it on his behalf, and making sure that Tyler kept his job and could now spend his evenings working on the stolen cars. With the police closing in on him, Dimato then fled the country, leaving Michelle to run things in his absence.

A few months later, Dimato made a sudden return to Australia, just as Tyler had confessed everything to Mark about his involvement in the stolen car ring. After a failed attempt by Tyler to get a recorded confession from Michelle, the police decided to wait a little longer, as Michelle had told Tyler that Dimato was on his way back. After Dimato visited Tyler at the garage and told him that he was gathering everyone at the warehouse at 3 o'clock that afternoon, the police planned to make sure that they were watching and could protect Tyler whilst they arrested Dimato and his associates. Unfortunately, Dimato turned up early, grabbing Tyler's phone and throwing it away, before taking him to the warehouse to join the others. As Mark tried to track down his brother, he was shocked when Paige admitted that she'd also been involved in the stolen car ring, and that she and Tyler had been pretending to be in a relationship to cover their illegal activities. Mark was stunned - particularly as he was still in love with Paige, following their brief relationship the previous year - but Paige helped to find out where the meeting was taking place, by phoning Dimato's nephew Joey, flirting with him and asking where he was. As Tyler made a desperate attempt to grab some evidence, swiping a phone with photos of the next batch of stolen cars, he was caught and it looked like the end for him, but Mark and Paige arrived, and managed to catch Dimato and Michelle.

By the end of the year, Dimato and Michelle had both been released and, whilst he'd skipped parole, she turned up in Erinsborough claiming that she knew where he was and that he'd been threatening and violent towards her. Though unsure of her motives, her story seemed to be true when she took out a restraining order against Dimato, and the police agreed to put her in a safe house. When she then turned up to see Paige, claiming that she still felt unsafe and needed help, Paige fell for her lies and started to offer her friendship and support, ultimately being kidnapped by one of Dimato's henchmen when she went to meet with Michelle one day. As Paige recovered from her ordeal in hospital, Michelle turned up to apologise - as apparently she'd been the real target for the kidnappers but had been running late. Dimato, meanwhile, finally presented himself at the police station, with his lawyers managing to persuade his parole officer that the disappearing act had all been a misunderstanding. Mark wasn't quite so sure, however, but with nothing sticking, and nothing linking him to the kidnapping, he was forced to let Dimato go. After a very public run-in with Michelle at The Waterhole, Dimato then found himself a new way to cause trouble in Erinsborough when he offered to help former mayor Paul - who, after his dodgy dealings had caught up with him, had been left with nothing - by offering to invest in his proposal for a gazebo business.

As Michelle continued to win over Paige with her story, she persuaded her to get her a SIM card and also mentioned the possibility of getting an apartment and putting the lease in Paige's name. Meanwhile, Michelle was annoyed to realise that the police were closing in on Warren, the man who'd been tasked with the kidnap, after he'd shown his face to Paige. After meeting up with Warren to discuss how they'd deal with him, Michelle and Dimato then moved on to the next part of their plan - getting Tyler on-side. When Michelle met up with Dimato again later that day, she became irritated with the way he was hassling her, and suggested that she might win over Tyler by sleeping with him. A furious Dimato then punched her, with them both unaware that the argument had been witnessed, from a distance, by Nate, a former soldier who'd broken up Dimato and Michelle's argument in the Waterhole the previous week, and was becoming very angry at the way Dimato had been treating his girlfriend. As a shocked and bruised Michelle hurried off, Nate approached Dimato with the intention of giving him a taste of his own medicine. Nate later confessed to boyfriend Aaron, who found a badly beaten Dimato, but agreed not to go to the police about Dimato punching Michelle, but to go and get help from Dr Karl Kennedy. Worried about the trouble Nate could be in, Karl helped Dimato to get painkillers, but admitted that he was undecided about going to the police, as he didn't want to see a bully getting away with his behaviour. As Karl walked away, telling him to do everyone a favour and get out of Erinsborough, Dimato contacted Coluzzi and sent him to the Kennedy house, to give Karl's wife Susan a fright and make sure that Karl kept his mouth shut.

When Dimato next met up with Paul, the gazebo business had folded, but he was keen to move on to his next venture - a motel. He suggested that Paul might like to run it for him, though he'd have to turn a blind eye to some of the more suspect goings on that might take place there. Unsure, Paul attempted to get a private detective on the case, but was unable to afford it, so instead decided to do some research himself. He followed Dimato to the apartment that Michelle had convinced Paige to lease for her, and realised that it was full of stolen goods from a spate of burglaries in the area. Dimato then caught Paul in the apartment, and Paul used the opportunity to agree to managing the motel - but on his own terms. Meanwhile, Dimato and Michelle had managed to frame Paige for everything, but Paul quickly warned her of their plan. When Michelle then called the police to report the activities in the apartment, Paige turned to Paul for help, and he told her that she still had time to get everything out of the apartment and hide it, as the police would probably need a few days to get a search warrant. Dimato soon realised who'd been helping Paige, and how she'd managed to wriggle out of their trap, and he warned Paul, who turned the tables, claiming that he'd been recording all of their recent conversations, and would take the recordings to the police unless Dimato got out of Erinsborough. Unsure whether Paul was lying, Dimato decided that it wasn't worth the risk, and he went to the police and told them that he'd be moving to Sydney.

Trivia Notes
David Serafin previously appeared in 2005 as Barry Dundas and in 2006 as Rex Colt
David Serafin was credited as Dennis Dimato for episode 7156, though the character only appeared in flashback scenes

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Biography by Steve