KUALA LUMPUR: A witness in the inquest into Dutch model Ivana Smit’s death last year has rubbished the testimony of a previous witness who claimed Smit was promiscuous, sexually adventurous and had “issues”.
Latsch Lisette, 31, also known as Ice, the 13th witness to testify in the inquest, today told the Coroner’s Court here that she did not witness any sexual advancements from Smit to an American-Kazakh couple at a bar, as claimed previously.
Ice, who hosted Smit at her residence for a few days last November, also denied Mohd Shareza Sadek Mohamed @ Adam’s claims that she had asked Smit to move in with him because she was annoyed with her “late-night partying”.
“I live in a two bedroom house with a housemate. This was an awkward arrangement that made Ivana uncomfortable (as she didn’t have a bed of her own).
“She wanted to have her own place to stay, so I asked Adam if he would be open to letting her stay at his place as I knew he had a spare bedroom. He was happy to do this.
“He was looking for a personal assistant anyway, and decided to offer Smit the position,” she said, adding she had never asked Smit to move out of her flat.
“Absolutely not. I simply did not have room for her.”
She added that a separate incident that Adam pointed out as evidence Smit had issues was not right.
Adam had said that he saw her crying when he first met her at Ice’s birthday party at a house on Oct 31 last year.
Ice said Smit was not in a good mood that day because of a “tasteless comment” made by the emcee of the party.
“He called Ivana up to the stage for the costume competition and asked the crowd whether they thought she was beautiful, and how much they would pay for her if she was a prostitute.
“That was why she was sad,” she said.
Smit’s nude body was found sprawled on the sixth floor balcony at CapSquare Residences, off Jalan Dang Wangi, in Kuala Lumpur on the afternoon of Dec 7 last year.
She is believed to have fallen from a 20th floor condo belonging to the American-Kazakh couple, Alex Johnson and Luna Almaz, just after 1pm.
Police originally classified the case as sudden death, but it was re-opened after Smit’s family claimed there were elements of foul play and a cover-up.
The inquest is to determine how Smit had died and whether there is evidence to take the case to trial.
During her testimony, Ice said she never heard or witnessed Smit asking or speaking to her about drugs.
A pathology report showed that drugs were found in Smit’s body, but not how long they had been in her system.
Ice said she could not disregard the possibility that drinks at bars and parties the duo frequented would be laced with drugs.
“But she was always in safe company (with me). Only when she left my company… then I wouldn’t know,” she said when quizzed by SN Nair, the lawyer holding a watching brief for Smit’s family.
Ice said she also did not hear Smit uttering the word “threesome” to the Johnsons as alleged by Adam, although she said she was present and could have heard it if it happened.
She said she didn’t witness any sexual groping by Ivana, and did not know about any of her Tinder dealings, denying claims that she was suicidal as well, or had issues with her German boyfriend, Lukas Kramer.
Asked if any of the actions alleged by Adam about Smit were true, such as her jumping up and dancing on a bar table top, Ice said she could not recall any of it, although she was there when the events allegedly occurred.
Asked later if she was informed by Adam that he had “taken sides” with the Johnsons, Ice said “not in that context”.
She explained Adam had once asked her to speak to the Johnsons’ lawyer shortly after Smit’s death, despite her refusal.
“A few months later, there was an article published with input from the Johnsons. Adam had pushed for me to speak with the journalist that interviewed them, but I told him no, I did not want to get involved.”
She added she could not say with certainty if there was a link between Adam and the Johnsons, stressing instead that his testimony did not tally with hers.
“As far as I remember (for example), it was Adam who conversed with Alex the most that night, not Alex and Ivana. Luna was just sitting there. They appeared normal. There was no inappropriate touching (as Adam said).”
Nair slammed Adam previously during his examination of him last week for “maligning” his client, saying it was not right for him to allege Smit was engaged in acts of this nature as she could not defend herself.
The Johnsons have since given an account of the events leading to Smit’s death to the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail, in which they alleged they slept with Smit regularly, while Luna had slept with Smit hours before she was found dead.
The inquest continues later this afternoon.