June 08, 2005

You are on the invidual archive page of Kissel case begins. Click Simon World weblog for the main page.
Kissel case begins

From the SCMP:

The wife of a top US banker murdered her husband by drugging his milkshake with sedatives before repeatedly striking his head with a heavy metal ornament, a court heard yesterday. Nancy Ann Kissel, 40, faced the first day of an eight-week jury trial in front of a packed public gallery. Kissel is charged with murdering her husband, Robert Peter Kissel, 40, on or about November 3, 2003 - the day after prosecutors allege he intended to tell her he was filing for divorce in the belief she had an affair with a television repairman while in the United States.

Kissel has pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Government prosecutor Peter Chapman SC told the jury in his opening address that Kissel drugged her husband by "lacing a milkshake with a cocktail of sedative drugs while he drank it on that fateful Sunday afternoon".

When her husband was under the influence of the drugs, Kissel struck with a heavy metal ornament in "a series of powerful and fatal blows" to the right side of his head, Mr Chapman told the Court of First Instance.

The day after killing her husband, Kissel embarked on a cover-up to disguise her premeditated act, the court was told.

She wrote an e-mail to cancel a meeting with a friend she was supposed to see. "My husband is not well. I need to take care of something ... Sorry, I will be in touch soon," Kissel allegedly wrote on November 4, 2003.

Robert Kissel, whose body was found near their luxury apartment in Parkview, Tai Tam, on November 6, 2003, was the Asia-Pacific managing director of global principal products for banking giant Merrill Lynch. The couple came to Hong Kong in 1997.

Mr Chapman said Nancy Kissel met TV repairman Michael del Priore in early 2003 after she left Hong Kong with her three children because of the Sars outbreak and stayed in Vermont for four months. Mr del Priore had "become the man in her life in place of her husband".

Mr Chapman said the deceased hired retired New York detective Frank Shea in June 2003 to confirm his wife's relationship with Mr del Priore.

Two months before his death, Robert Kissel told the detective he was concerned about his own safety and believed his wife might have been drugging him.

Mr Shea advised him to contact the police and to have his blood and urine tested. "He had not gone to have the tests because he felt guilty about his suspicion."

Nancy Kissel was the beneficiary or primary beneficiary of three life insurance policies worth a total of US$5 million her husband held with a New York-based insurance company and two Merrill Lynch life insurance policies with a total value of US$1.75 million.

About four months before his death, realising the "deteriorating state" of their marriage, Robert Kissel also sought advice from lawyers Sharon Ser and Robin Egerton about divorce, jurisdiction, custody of children and financial matters. He did not make a new will although he was advised by Ms Ser to do so.

The jury was also told that in early 2003 the deceased installed a spyware programme to record activity - including e-mails - on a notebook computer used by his wife and a desktop computer at their home.

Copies of love messages allegedly written by Mr del Priore to Nancy Kissel were also retrieved from the deceased's office drawers. One said: "I love you when you call my name. It makes me melt."

The hearing continues today before Mr Justice Michael Lunn.

posted by Simon on 06.08.05 at 09:22 AM in the Kissel category.


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Send a manual trackback ping to this post.


The story in the SCMP and the Story in the Standard have different versions, some facts are different, including the policy amounts and the quotes.

posted by: person on 06.08.05 at 03:43 PM [permalink]

Post a Comment:


Email Address:



Remember your info?