The Nancy Kissel Case - Part 28

(The Standard)  Court told of gay-sex search.  By Albert Wong.  July 221, 2005.

At a time when Robert Kissel was the only family member staying in Hong Kong, but days before a trip to Taiwan, the family's desktop computer was used to search for Web sites relating to gay sex in Taiwan and other sexual services, the High Court heard in the murder trial of the deceased Merrill Lynch banker's wife, Nancy.

According to travel records, Nancy Kissel and her three children went to the United States in March 2003 to avoid the SARS outbreak in the territory.  Travel records also show that Robert Kissel stayed behind, but left for Taiwan on April 8, 2003.

Using computer software called Netanalysis - said to be used by law-enforcement authorities in the United States and Britain - Alexander King, senior counsel for Nancy Kissel, showed the jury on computer screens in the courtroom how it was possible to search for Internet records on the Dell desktop computer used by the Kissel family in their Parkview residence.

In the demonstration, King's legal team opened up files that showed the computer was used for about 90 minutes on April 3 and 4 to search for gay porn sites, Taiwan female escort services and "sex in HK.''  A computer forensic scientist working with the Technology Crimes Bureau, Cheung Chun-kit, agreed that, on those dates, Google searches were made for "various types of sexual services in Taiwan.''

Kissel, 41, is accused of serving her husband a pink milkshake laced with sedatives and beating him to death with a heavy metal ornament as he lay unconscious at the foot of their bed on November 2, 2003.  Kissel told a doctor and the police at the time that her husband assaulted her while drunk after she refused him sex, and that he then disappeared.  She denies the murder charge and is out on bail.  The banker's decomposing body was found wrapped in a carpet in a storeroom at the Parkview residential complex on November 7, 2003.

The court heard Thursday that computer searches were made for "Mpeg sex,'' "hot male sex'' and "Taiwan escorts'' while Kissel and her children were away.  "A number of entries were made for `married and lonely in Hong Kong,''' King said , as well as one for "wife is a b****.''

The defense team then switched to a computer program called EnCase, which recaptures computer fragments and converts them to recreate the Web page that was originally viewed.

On April 5, the computer was used to search for "Sex in HK,'' but only received six results. A search for "Sex in Taiwan'' received 516,000 results.  Noting that the "Sex in Taiwan'' page showed "results'' from 111-120, he asked Cheung: "Does that suggest that the viewer has looked from pages one to 111?''  "It's possible,'' Cheung said.  King noted a search for "Used Porsches'' was also conducted in the same session.  

Cheung was given four computers to examine on November 24, 2003, but he said Thursday he did not spend much time examining the Dell computer and did not discover the gay porn sites revealed by the defense.  Cheung testified earlier that the Sony Vaio laptop computer, allegedly used by Nancy Kissel, was used for a Google search for "Rohyphnol'' on October 23 - a misspelling of the odorless and tasteless "date-rape'' drug, Rohypnol.  Consequently, Web sites explaining that Rohypnol is often "added to a drink without the victim tasting it'' were viewed, Cheung said.

Senior Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions Peter Chapman reminded the court that a doctor and nurse had already submitted written testimony that Rohypnol tablets were given to Nancy Kissel on October 23.

The case continues before justice Michael Lunn today.

(SCMP; no link)  Kissel computer 'used to look for gay porn'.  By Polly Hui.  July 22, 2005.

Nancy Kissel's husband had searched a large number of websites on gay pornography and sex services in Taiwan shortly before he went on a three-day trip there, her defence counsel alleged yesterday.

The allegation by Alexander King SC came as he presented to the Court of First Instance the internet use history between April 3 and April 5, 2003, of a desktop computer seized by the police from the defendant's Parkview flat.

The court heard the defence team, using software for analysis of internet history, had found search engine entries such as "anal", "cocks", "gay anal sex", "bisexual" and "male ass". Some had been made several times over the three days, at a time Mr King said only Robert Peter Kissel, who Nancy Kissel is accused of murdering, would have had access to the computer.

Mr King, who presented the records with the help of computer experts, said the evidence was retrieved after the prosecution gave the defence a copy of the hard disk in January to examine.  The findings, displayed on television and computer screens in court yesterday, also indicated numerous searches on sex websites in Taiwan, such as "gay sex or anal sex in Taiwan", "Taiwan female escorts" and "Taiwan companions".

Mr King told the jury there were also search entries for "married and lonely in HK" and an entry for "wife is a bitch", "looking for girls in Hong Kong" and "Mpeg sex".

Kissel, 41, is accused of bludgeoning her investment banker husband to death on or around November 2, 2003, in their Parkview flat. Kissel, who reported to police that her husband assaulted her, has pleaded not guilty to murder.

The desktop computer, allegedly used by the Kissel children, was one of four computers officers seized from the flat. The other three were another Dell desktop, the deceased's IBM notebook and the defendant's Sony Vaio notebook.

Mr King pointed out that Kissel left for the US on March 29 and returned on July 30, 2003, to escape Sars. Immigration records showed the deceased returned from a trip on March 12 before he left for Taiwan on April 8 and returned again three days later. Mr King argued that between April 3 and 5, the only person who could have had access to the computer was the deceased.  Referring to about three pages that listed the search entries, Mr King asked police computer forensic expert Cheung Chun-kit: "Do nearly all these sites appear to you to be gay pornography websites?" He said: "Seems so by looking at the names of the websites."

Prosecutor Peter Chapman told the jury Mr Cheung's evidence also suggested the Sony notebook had been used to browse websites on Rohypnol, known as a date-rape drug, on October 23, 2003.  One of the websites explained that a person who drank a beverage containing the drug would not be able to detect it. The court has heard that the drug was prescribed to Kissel and that it was found in her husband's stomach.

The case continues today.

(IOL)  Murdered banker 'sought sex in Taiwan'.  July 22, 2005.

A millionaire American banker, allegedly murdered by his wife in Hong Kong, surfed the Internet for gay sex services in Taiwan before a business trip, a news report said on Friday.  The claim came in the trial of 41-year-old Nancy Kissel, who stands accused of drugging her husband Robert with a laced strawberry milkshake and then bludgeoning him to death with a statue.  The body of 40-year-old Robert Kissel, an executive for Merrill Lynch, was found rolled up in a carpet and left in a storeroom of the luxury block of flats he lived in with his wife and children in Hong Kong.

Nancy Kissel is accused of murdering her husband in November 2003 after he discovered she was having an affair with a TV repair man in the United States, and he planned to divorce her.  

Her High Court trial heard on Thursday that computer analysis showed Kissel had surfed the Net for "gay sex or anal sex in Taiwan" shortly before a three-day business trip there.  Kissel also entered the search words "gay anal sex", defence counsel Alexander King said, according to the South China Morning Post.  Other entries turned up in a search of the computer hard drive found the phrases "married and lonely in HK", "looking for girls in Hong Kong" and "wife is a bitch", the newspaper said.

Nancy Kissel, who denies the charge, claims she killed her husband in self-defence when he tried to rape her in the bedroom of their apartment in the territory's exclusive Repulse Bay district.  Her counsel is seeking to portray Kissel as a promiscuous, heavy-drinking and uncaring husband who had a history of violence and neglect towards his wife.

Prosecutors say Nancy Kissel, the sole beneficiary of multi-million-dollar insurance policies, plotted to poison then kill her husband as the reality of divorce and her low-life affair hit home.  The case - expected to end in late August - has captivated Hong Kong's Chinese papers, enthralled by the rare glimpse of "white mischief" in the luxury expatriate compounds in Hong Kong.