Elderly coin dealer killed in “severe, vicious way” court told

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A 71-year-old coin dealer from Northampton was killed in a “severe, vicious way” in his home, a jury at Northampton Crown Court has been told.

Prosecutors allege Giuseppe Miceli was attacked with a mallet or hammer in his house by Mark Ellson, 41, currently of no fixed abode. Ellson denies the murder.

Mr Miceli died some time between 11.10am on Friday, July 12, 2013 and 12.30pm the following day at his home in Bants Lane, Northampton.

Opening the trial at Northampton Crown Court this week, Cristopher Donnellan QC, prosecuting, said: “The likely motive is that Mr Miceli was murdered by the defendant because the defendant needed money. Whatever his motive is, it’s clear that the defendant had planned an attack on Mr Miceli.”

Mr Donnellan said Mr Miceli’s attacker would have known that using a weapon, likely to have been a hammer or mallet, would cause really serious harm or kill.

He told the court: “Although he may not have planned in advance to have killed Mr Miceli, when it came to that Friday afternoon, hitting him repeatedly over the head with this implement, there’s no doubt then that this defendant intended to kill.”

The prosecution also alleged that on July 11, Ellson had searched on the internet for the phrase “best place to hit head knock them out” and “how hard hit someone knock them out back of head hammer”. The prosecution told the court that immediately after the internet searches, Ellson called Mr Miceli from a phone box to arrange to meet him on a business pretext.

Ellson then travelled to Nottingham, it was said, where he carried out searches on a public computer for ‘Northampton news headlines,’ ‘murder Northampton’ and his own name.

The trial continues.