Eleanor Mangion Walker's brother tells court her alleged killer ‘sold drugs’

The brother of murder victim Eleanor Mangion Walker has told a court that Andrew Mangion, who stands accused of the murder, was a 'drug dealer'

Andrew Mangion
Andrew Mangion

The brother of murder victim Eleanor Mangion Walker has told a court that Andrew Mangion, who stands accused of the murder, was a “drug dealer.”

Mangion is charged with stabbing his wife to death inside a Swieqi garage, before dumping her body in a disused warehouse in Qormi last July.

Jack Walker, brother of the deceased, testified that Andrew Mangion would sell drugs at an entertainment venue and that his customers would ask for Mangion if he was not home.

This morning, inspector Keith Arnaud, who is leading the prosecution in the murder case against Mangion, asked the witness about Mangion's alleged drug dealing.

Walker, who lived on the same floor in the same apartment complex as the accused, said that strangers had even knocked on the front door of his residence, asking for Mangion “a couple of times.”

“I would say that he lived in the flat across from mine, and they would ask if I could help them myself,” the witness said, adding that he was not happy about this.

The witness said that he knew the accused since Mangion had started dating his sister “some eight to 10 years” before. A former drug user himself, Walker claimed to have been asked by Mangion to refer people to him.

Walker worked at an entertainment spot, but declined to name the place in court today.

“I had been working there for 14 years and this had been happening for 14 years,” he said. He did not explain how this corresponded with the eight-to-10 year timeline he had just given for Mangion's relationship with his sister, however.

Cross-examined by Mangion's lawyer, Joe Giglio, Walker said that he had known the accused for eight years. He refused to say where it was that he worked, but said that the people who would come seeking Andrew Mangion to ask for drugs, would be tourists.

“How would they know that you knew who sold drugs?” the lawyer asked. “They would know the security guard or the barman,” he said, adding that they would ask him “for all kinds of drugs.”

Although the witness described himself as a former junkie, he denied being involved in the drug trade. “I never sold drugs. I followed a programme, I have a certificate from Caritas.”

A court-appointed expert also testified today, linking a bloodstained paper that had been found on the victim's body to the garage where the murder is thought to have taken place. The expert had been asked to examine the paper and a notebook, which had been found in the Swieqi garage where the murder is alleged to have taken place. He had concluded that it had been a leaf taken out of the same notepad. “The corner of the paper and the notepad had been compared and were a complete match.” In the notebook's spiral binding, there had been several fragments of paper, one of which matched with a corresponding tear in the paper found on the body.

A police sergeant who had gathered evidence from the residence which the victim had shared with the accused also gave evidence today. Cross-examined by Giglio, who asked whether the officer had gathered any clothes belonging to the accused from the scene, the officer said he hadn't. The lawyer asked whether he had verified the sleeping arrangements or checked whether the two slept in the same room. This aspect had not been investigated, the officer replied.

The compilation of evidence continues in July.

Magistrate Doreen Clarke is presiding. Police Inspectors Keith Arnaud and Kylie Borg are prosecuting.

Lawyer Joe Giglio is appearing for Mangion, while lawyers Michael and Lucio Sciriha are appearing for the victim’s family.

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