A long strand of golden hair in the shower of a flat rented by the accused in the murder of Shannon Mak appeared to indicate the victim’s presence inside her former boyfriend’s home.

This came to light on Tuesday in the ongoing compilation of evidence against Jelle Rijpma, the 23-year-old Dutch gaming employee who allegedly knifed his fellow colleague and former girlfriend outside his rented Santa Venera home in the early hours of August 3, 2018.

As the several relatives of the murdered woman rallied around her wheelchair-bound mother inside the courtroom, two officers from the Forensic Science Laboratory recalled their investigations at the scene of crime.

PS Eman Dalli and PC Kurt Attard presented the court with their joint report compiled after photographing the scene of crime and the alleged murderer’s converted garage on Triq l-Istampaturi.

It was there that the officers had found a single, long strand of golden hair on the handle of the shower bar. Traces of blood had also been found inside the premises, together with 17 cigarette butts.

These materials, as well as fingerprints lifted by the officers, had been handed over for forensic tests after being duly photographed on site.

An RIU officer, Luke Stivala, one of a party of four uniformed policemen who had arrested the suspected murderer, recalled how they had come across Mr Rijpma seated inside his flat, calmly watching television.

“He appeared relaxed,” the witness said.

“Did he ask any questions?” parte civile lawyer Stefano Filletti asked.

“No. He behaved normally as though he had been expecting us,” the officer replied, adding that the suspect had cooperated during the arrest.

“Did he ask ‘why’?” Dr Filletti persisted.

“No, nothing,” came the reply.

The case continues next month. Inspector Robert Vella prosecuted. Lawyer Leontine Calleja was defence counsel.

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