Lover denies arson murder — (The Herald Sun)

To view original article click here

The Herald Sun

Kate Uebergang

November 24, 2006 12:00am

A WOMAN accused of drugging her lover and leaving him to die in his burning house has been ordered to stand trial.

Vasiliki “Vicky” Efandis, 47, yesterday pleaded not guilty to murdering George Marcetta at his Bellfield home on September 8, 2004.

Ms Efandis is accused of lacing the 58-year-old painter’s dinner with depression medication, pouring kerosene around his house and lighting it.

Magistrate Frank Hodgens granted Ms Efandis bail, despite prosecution claims she had been “tutoring” witnesses on what to tell police.

Det-Sgt John Gibson told Melbourne Magistrates’ Court she was secretly recorded telling her daughter what time she arrived home on the night of the fire, what she wore and when she went to bed.

He said Ms Efandis had also instructed her former partner George Likisiotis “what to say to police, in particular to malign the character of the deceased”.

Det-Sgt Gibson said she had talked to Mr Likisiotis about the guns Mr Marcetta owned and said he had threatened her.

“We believe that witnesses will be interfered with,” he said.

But Mr Hodgens said Ms Efandis had been in jail for more than 15 months and long delays were expected before her trial.

He said neither Ms Efandis’s daughter nor Mr Likisiotis were “crucial” to the prosecution case and she could still speak to them while in custody.

Ms Efandis was released on a $10,000 surety and must report to police twice a week.

Mr Hodgens ordered her to appear in the Supreme Court on March 6 next year.