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Kemp Town murder suspect 'stole medals from victim'
The lover of a man found murdered in his Brighton flat was stealing from the victim, according to a former housemate.
Martin Michalski lived with 62-year-old Michael Polding for 20 years in East Croydon before his friend moved to the south coast last year.
Mr Polding was found dead in his flat in St George’s Road, Brighton, in July.
Police launched a murder investigation and are searching for a man dubbed the Artful Dodger, Ricardo Pisano, who detectives say is the prime suspect.
Mr Pisano would regularly visit Mr Polding at his Croydon home and Mr Michalski distrusted him from the start.
He said: “He would come around quite a lot. He and Michael had a bit of a relationship but when I saw him around I threw him out.
“He would come around while I was out at work during the day. I didn’t take to him. The only times I spoke to him were to throw him out.”
Mr Michalski claimed Mr Pisano stole war medals inherited by Mr Polding from his father but returned them when he could not find a buyer.
Mr Pisano, who is also known as Brandon Victor Pillay, is a convicted criminal who walked out of an open prison in New Zealand ten years ago after being jailed for fraud offences.
The last known sighting of Mr Pisano, who has previously masqueraded as an aboriginal Australian and an Italian, was at a shopping centre in Southampton on July 28.
Mr Michalski, who lost touch with Mr Polding after he moved, said Mr Pisano spoke with an antipodean accent but he never knew his name.
He said: “This guy was smart, no one knew his name or where he came from. He obviously had a place of his own.”
Anyone with information should call Sussex Police on 101 quoting Operation Journal, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.