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"Milkshake Murder" Retrial: American Nancy Kissel Facing New Jury in Hong Kong Killing of Banker Husband

American Nancy Kissel walks out of Hong Kong's High Court in this Aug. 2, 2005 file photo. Kissel, serving a life term in Hong Kong will return to court Monday, April 14, 2008 to appeal her sentence for bashing her banker husband to death after spiking his milkshake with sedatives four and a half years ago. (AP Photo)

"Milkshake Murder" Retrial: American Nancy Kissel Facing New Jury in Hong Kong Killing of Banker Husband
Nancy Kissel (AP Photo, file)

HONG KONG (CBS/AP) Nancy Kissel, an American housewife accused of drugging then clubbing her banker-husband to death in Hong Kong seven years ago, stood trial for murder for a second time Tuesday after the Chinese territory's highest court tossed out her earlier conviction.

The case was dubbed the "Milkshake Murder" because prosecutors alleged Kissel carefully plotted her husband's murder in November 2003, first drugging him with a milkshake laced with sedatives and then bludgeoning him with a metal ornament.

Kissel said she killed her husband in self-defense after he attacked her with a baseball bat and tried to rape her.

The first trial against the 47-year-old native of Adrian, Michigan grabbed worldwide attention with juicy details on the breakdown of a wealthy expatriate marriage in this southern Chinese financial hub. It spawned two books and a TV special.

The conviction and mandatory life sentence Nancy Kissel received in 2005 was overturned last year because prosecutors improperly cross-examined her and the judge allowed hearsay evidence.

Kissel, who remains in custody, pleaded innocent to the new murder charge Tuesday at Hong Kong's High Court.

While prosecutors portrayed Robert Kissel as a loving father, his wife said the former investment banker for Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch was a heavy drinker and cocaine user who was frequently sexually abusive.

The judge presiding over the retrial ordered a new jury Wednesday because of procedural concerns. A jury was formed on Tuesday, but High Court Judge Andrew Macrae replaced it on Wednesday because he was worried about whether a juror was substituted in a lawful manner.

The death of Robert Kissel was previously covered in an episode of 48 Hours | Mystery.

  • Edecio Martinez

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