Thursday, August 04, 2005

Confessin' the Blues
The Kissel trial only gets hotter, so hot that we copy desk droids have to scrub some of the really sordid details cuz The Standard, despite being a tabloid, has to maintain some, er, standards what with being "China's Business Newspaper'' and all. But if you're into too much information, here's some raw copy -- some of which won't be in print Friday.
Caution: Cocaine, Lubricants and Bleeding Anuses Ahead.

The high profile murder of a top Merrill Lynch banker took a dramatic turn of events when accused murderer Nancy Kissel accepted on Thursday that she used a heavy metal ornament to the inflict fatal injuries on her husband.
Nancy Kissel, 41, was then subjected to an intense afternoon of questioning for details about the alleged history of persistent drug-fuelled, forceful sodomy.
With his very first question in cross-examination, Senior Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Peter Chapman dealt with ``just one little matter that (the accused) might be able to help us on; Do you accept that you killed Robert Kissel?'' he asked.
``Yes,'' she replied.
``Do you accept that you used that ornament to inflict those (fatal) injuries?''
``Yes,'' she replied.
Chapman noted that throughout the trial the accused had been taking notes and passing messages to her lawyers from the dock. With her knowledge of the prosecution case, ``can you help us please, with which of those (prosecution) evidence, do you dispute?''
``I've heard a lot of people talk about what they participated in, what they saw, and what they said. I'm not sure it's about disputing, but trying to understand what's been said. So many people saying things of what I don't have any recollection. I'm not sure of whether it's about it being right or wrong,'' she answered.
Pressed further by Chapman, she said she ``disagreed'' with the fact she was ``hot-tempered'', a description offered by her former domestic helper, Maximina Macaraeg.
Nancy Kissel is accused of serving her husband a pink milkshake laced with sedatives, which left him unconscious at the foot of her bed as she bludgeoned him to death with a heavy metal ornament on November 2, 2003.
On Wednesday, she told the court there had been a furious struggle between herself and her husband in their master bedroom that night. After knocking her husband on the head with the alleged murder weapon while resisting more sexual abuse, Robert Kissel charged at her with a baseball bat, repeatedly saying, ``I'm going to kill you, you bitch,'' she claims.
The decomposing body of the former Merrill Lynch banker was found in the early hours of November 7, 2003, wrapped in a rug in a storeroom at the Parkview residential complex. She has denied the charge of murder and is out on bail.
Earlier Thursday morning, she was asked by her counsel, Alexander King SC, whether she could remember how the fatal blows to the head of the deceased got there. She sat in her witness box in silence, shaking, and offered no reply.
Chapman's first line of questioning, and consequent response, stunned the courtroom just before the lunch break. When the trial resumed, the courtroom was packed to the brim with many in the public gallery unable to find a seat.
The prosecutor established with the accused at the beginning of his unrelenting cross-examination that apart from two occasions in 2003, she had never seen a psychiatrist and does not have a history of memory loss prior to that fatal night, November 2, 2003.
Chapman then took the accused to the beginning of her testimony where she described her life as student in New York juggling three catering jobs to fund her former husband's MBA and cocaine use.
``So what were the three restaurants that you worked at the time, do they have names?'' he asked. The accused explained that she knew people in the restaurant business who would phone her up when there were catering jobs available but she did ``not really'' know of any names. In other words, ``these three jobs you held at the same time were for nameless corporate catering-related organisations,'' said Chapman.
Referring to the deceased's alleged frequent cocaine use since his days as an MBA student, ``you were supporting him, you were giving him the money'' how much would he spend on the drugs? asked Chapman.
``It would vary. Sometimes 100 dollars a day, sometimes more.''
``So you were giving him three to five thousand dollars a month?'' he asked.
``There were times he received drugs without paymentI don't know where he got those drugs from. On occasions, friends would give him drugs,'' she said.
``2, 500?'' he asked. ``I don't know.''. ``2,000?'' he asked. ``I don't know.'' ``500?'' he asked. ``I don't know,'' she said.
``So how much were you shelling out for Robert's cocaine habit? Give us a figure Mrs Kissel,'' said Chapman.
She said she was unable to give a figure, since her financial support went to food, rent and various facilities, but that she was largely paying for the drugs in the beginning of their relationship. ``And while all this was going on, you managed to purchase property in New York,'' noted Chapman.
She said she could not remember how the loft apartment in Greenwich Village was paid for.
Moving on to their relocation, ``while he was in Hong Kong, where was he getting his cocaine from?'' asked Chapman. ``I don't know,'' she replied. She said she never asked where he got his supplies from and did not know whether she used it on business trips.
``Did you remind him that countries around this area take a pretty dim view of hard drugs?'' asked Chapman. She said she only talked about the health issues and not the legal implications. ``He's not much good to you busted in Malaysia on drugs charges is he?'' Nancy agreed.
When they came to Hong Kong, ``did the frequency that he demanded anal sex change in any way?'' asked Chapman. She said it ``increased tremendously'' towards 2002.
``How often each month would you be having forced anal sex with Robert Kissel?'' he asked. She said she never counted. ``Give us a number Mrs Kissel.''
``It wasn't about how many times. It was a progression of how we were together. Starting in different positions. The ability to move into those positions. Progression of sexual activity. There were times that he got very frustrated, by my changing, moving into ways he didn't wantIt was a period in which things developed into something different. There was force involved.''
She said sometimes there would be cocaine involved, sometimes alcohol, sometimes both, sometimes neither.
``Did Robert Kissel ever wear a condom?'' asked Chapman. ``No.''
``Did he ever use any lubricant or gel?'' asked Chapman. ``No,'' she replied. ``And he never had a problem effecting anal entry throughout this period?'' he asked. She said she would bleed from the anus, two times a year, each time for ``maybe a day or two.''
While on business trips, ``you wouldn't know he slept with other women in other countries and had anal sex with them, would you,'' said Chapman. Nancy agreed.
Chapman noted that two of the accused's close friends had sexually contracted HIV and died of Aids, including her maid of honour, Ali Gertz. ``Did Gertz's fate ever cross your mind while you were passing blood'' as a result of forceful sodomy, asked Chapman. He noted that given the deceased's alleged cocaine habit, appetite for sodomy and frequent travelling, he might be considered ``high risk.''
The accused said, ``I had a huge awareness of Aids, when my friend was diagnosed'' and that she did not believe those factors would make him ``high-risk.''
``In relation to these activities -- cocaine, alcohol fuelled anal sex with you by Robert Kissel. Did you at anytime tell anyone about it?'' asked Chapman.
``No,'' she replied, ``it was something that was happening gradually in my marriage. Something I took responsibility for, not something you talk about to the girls.''
``During the more violent episodes that involved hair being pulled, ribs being broken and pain causing blood did you ever scream out?'' he asked.
``Did I scream out? I may have,'' she replied.
``Did anyone ever hear you over five years?'' he asked. ``I don't know, a lot of the time I was facing down. A lot of the time, I cried,'' she said,
``Have you ever been examined in relation to the results of forceful anal sex over this five year period?'' he asked. ``No, it's humiliating,'' she replied.
The trial has been adjourned until Monday acommodate an appointment for a juror. Nancy Kissel will continue to be questioned before Justice Michael Lunn.
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