QC says Kissel's crime 'simple case of murder'

PUBLISHED : Friday, 18 March, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 18 March, 2011, 12:00am

The case of Nancy Kissel was 'straightforward,' a court heard yesterday, as the prosecution summed up its argument that the American mother-of-three had murdered her investment banker husband.

'It is a simple, straightforward case of murder, a story as old as history itself,' said David Perry QC, for the prosecution.

'A woman falls out of love with her husband, comes to despise him, the man who was previously the object of her desire, and falls in love with another. She begins to wish her husband would disappear and eventually kills him,' he said.

Perry was speaking at the Court of First Instance, where Kissel, 46, is being retried.

For over 40 days of hearings scheduled to last 50, the jury of nine heard testimony from dozens of witnesses testifying for both the prosecution and Kissel. With the hearing of evidence now concluded, prosecutors began summing up yesterday.

Kissel pleaded not guilty to murder and guilty to manslaughter on the basis of provocation and diminished responsibility, which the prosecution does not accept. Prosecutors say she murdered Robert Kissel, a 40-year-old Merrill Lynch investment banker, on or about November 2, 2003.

'In October 2003, Nancy Kissel was an organised and efficient woman. She was chairperson of the United Jewish Congregation gala, running a photography business, going out to dinner with friends, hosting parties, attending Hong Kong International School on an almost daily basis, having an affair with another man and, the prosecution say, she was also planning to do harm to her husband,' Perry said.

Robert Kissel was given a drugged milkshake, before five blows were dealt to the right side of his head.

'So great was the force of the blows, that not only did it smash Robert Kissel's skull, it broke the ornament into three pieces,' Perry said.

Perry said it was 'convenient' that Nancy Kissel could not remember events after the attack.

The retrial continues.