A young Dutchman accused of killing his former girlfriend had moved into a small apartment metres away from where her body was found just days before the murder.

This fresh snippet of information emerged on Friday as the compilation of evidence continued against 22-year old Jelle Rijpma, a former boyfriend and work colleague of co-national Shannon Mak, whose lifeless body was found early one August morning in Triq il-Mastrudaxxi, Santa Venera, her neck slit almost from ear to ear.

The detail was revealed under oath by the landlady who had rented out her flatlet on Triq l-Istampaturi to the Dutchman, whose identity she confirmed when taking the witness stand today.

Read: Shannon Mak's body was unrecognisable, court told

“Jelle was living there for a few days,” the woman explained before magistrate Simone Grech. “He was recommended to me by a colleague of his. He came to me. He was there for less than 15 days.”

Asked by prosecuting inspector Kurt Zahra to explain further, the witness confirmed that Mr Rijpma had approached her towards the end of July. “It was the third or fourth week of July. We had a sort of preliminary agreement,” the woman recalled, adding that she still had a copy of that agreement which she would willingly make available to the court.

During Friday’s sitting, a Human Resources manager at Evolution Malta Limited, a local gaming company where both Mr Rijpma and Ms Mak had worked, was also summoned by the prosecution to confirm that both the accused and his former girlfriend had been employed by the company.

At the start of the sitting, the court delivered a decree authorising the transfer of a particular exhibit to a laboratory for DNA testing. This exhibit consisted in a piece of glass allegedly containing traces of blood.

In the course of Friday’s sitting, CID Inspector Fabian Fleri, who had testified in October about the identification process of the victim and the ultimate arrest of her alleged murderer, was asked to repeat his deposition on account of a technical hitch in the court’s recording system during the earlier sitting.

The case continues next month.

Inspector Kurt Zahra prosecuted. Lawyer Leontine Calleja was defence counsel. Lawyer Stefano Filletti appeared parte civile.

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