Alex Murdoff latest: Condemned US lawyer sentenced for killing wife and son

Alex Murdoff latest: Condemned US lawyer sentenced for killing wife and son

Richard “Alex” Murdoff, a South Carolina lawyer who pleaded guilty to murdering his wife and son in a serious and complicated case that has drawn international attention, faces 30 years to life in prison when a judge sentences him today.

On Thursday, a jury in South Carolina found Murdoff, 54, guilty of fatally shooting his wife Maggie, 52, and youngest son Paul, 22, on their family property on June 7, 2021. He was also convicted of two related firearms charges. charge.

Circuit Court Judge Clifton Newman scheduled a sentencing hearing for 9:30 a.m., which is 2:30 p.m. in the UK.

Marduff, a scion of an influential legal family in Charleston’s west side, faces 30 years to life in prison for each of the two counts of murder under South Carolina law.

Mr Newman, who will impose the sentence, told the jury he believed they had made the right call. After hearing testimony for five weeks, jurors deliberated only three hours before reaching their verdict.

“The evidence of guilt is overwhelming,” Mr. Newman said Thursday, denying a defense motion for a mistrial.

Follow the latest updates below.

02:45 PM

Sentencing begins

Creighton Waters, prosecuting, said Murdoff had “breached the trust of his friends, family and partners but most importantly, Maggie and Paul.

“I’m very grateful that the jury gave them a voice.

“Paul was described as a fun loving young man.”

“Maggie was cut down early in her life.”

Anyone who thought they didn’t know this man actually knows who he is.

02:40 PM

How will it be played?

Mardaf will be brought to court soon.

A victim impact statement may be read in court.

Buster Murdoch, whose mother and brother were killed in the attack, will now be led away by his father to spend the rest of his life behind bars. He was in the witness box during the trial, but could speak again today.

Maggie Murdoff’s parents were on the witness list but were never called. They may also provide a victim impact statement.

Later, there will be punishment. Murdaugh faces anywhere from 30 years to life in prison. Commentators expect him to be charged for life.

He will then be taken into the custody of the correctional facility.

02:25 PM

The dynasty of the Murdouh family is broken

As Alex Murdoff stands before a judge to learn his fate, he will be in the same circuit court that tried his father, grandfather and great-grandfather as the elected prosecutor for more than 80 years. Her grandfather’s portrait hung in the back of the room until the judge ordered it taken down for trial.

Instead of the dress shirt and sport coat he wore during his six-week trial, the attorney who has sued major companies for millions on behalf of people injured in wrecks, arrived in court in a prison jumpsuit the day after he was found guilty of two counts of murder. .

Murdoff being taken away Thursday night – AP Photo/Chris Carlson

02:11 PM

Why extraordinary stories are sweeping America

Between the drama unfolding in the courtroom and a timely Netflix documentary on the small screen, the nation is gripped.

Read Josie Ensor’s article on how justice has gripped America.

02:06 PM

Judging will begin at 2.30pm GMT (9.30am EST).

The Telegraph will carry a live stream of Alex Murdoff’s sentencing, which is scheduled to begin at 9:30am in South Carolina, 2:30pm in the UK.

The 54-year-old faces 30 years to life in prison.

02:01 PM

How we got here

The case drew intense media coverage because of the family’s immense political power in and around Colleton County, where the trial took place. For decades until 2006, family members served as leading prosecutors in the area, and Murduff was a prominent personal injury attorney in the Deep South.

Throughout the trial, prosecutors portrayed Murdoff as a serial liar and argued that only he had the means and opportunity to commit the murders. Prosecutors said he shot and killed his wife and son to distract him from financial misdeeds, including stealing millions of dollars from his law partners and clients — money used to feed a years-long opioid addiction and support an extravagant lifestyle.

For their part, Murdoff’s lawyers tried to paint their client as a loving family man who faced financial difficulties and suffered from an opioid addiction that led him to lie and steal, never to harm his wife and children.

Murdoff pleaded not guilty, but admitted to lying about his whereabouts on the night of the murders to prove that evidence placed him at the scene, undermining his credibility to the jury.

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