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‘Sweetie Pie’s’ star Tim Norman convicted of arranging nephew’s murder

ST. LOUIS A federal jury on Friday convicted a former star of the St. Louis-based reality Television show Welcome to Sweetie Pies of arranging the shooting death of his nephew.

The jury deliberated about 17 hours over three days before reaching its verdict in the murder-for-hire case against James Tim Norman, the St. Louis Post-Dispatchreported. He was charged with conspiracy to commit murder-for-hire, murder-for-hire and conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.

Norman and his nephew, Andre Montgomery, both starred in the long-running OWN reality show in regards to a popular soul-food business founded in the St. Louis area by Robbie Montgomery Normans mother and Andres grandmother.

Prosecutors aren’t seeking the death penalty but Norman could possibly be sentenced to around life in prison. Sentencing is defined for Dec. 15.

Federal prosecutors said Norman, 43, hired two different people to kill the 21-year-old Montgomery on March 14, 2016, then tried to cash a $450,000 life insurance coverage applied for on his nephew months earlier.

Defense attorney Michael Leonard said following the verdict he and Norman were extremely surprised and disappointed in the results of the case. He said they intend to appeal and that Norman is still optimistic he will eventually prevail.

Leonard said the testimony through the trial of two co-conspirators was been shown to be extremely non-credible. And he saidNorman testifiedwell through the trial, noting he had not been cross-examined.

U.S. Attorney Sayler Fleming said she was very, happy with the verdict but that her office would make no more statements until following the sentencing.

During closing arguments, Assistant U.S. Attorney Angie Danis said Norman was the architect of the program to kill Montgomery.

This course of action doesnt exist but also for Tim Normans greed, Danis said.

Leonard argued in his closing argument that the murder plot presented by prosecutors was a composed theory.

Prosecutors said Norman paid $10,000 to an exotic dancer, Terica Ellis, to lure his nephew to the website where he was shot and paid $5,000 to Travell Anthony Hill to shoot Montgomery.

Ellis and Hill both testified for the prosecution in the event. They will have bothpleaded guiltyto taking part in the scheme.

In testimony through the trial, Norman said he helped his nephew proceed to St. Louis about 18 months before he was killed and supported him financially because he was attempting to look out for Montgomery. He said he sought to become a father figure to his brothers son.

Former Sweetie Pies employees along with other character witnesses testified that Norman and his nephew had a detailed relationship.

Danis said all of the testimony from the schemes co-conspirators was supported in trial by texts, call records and location data.

She said Norman created a graphic to be a mentor and a father figure to all or any these folks, but its fiction.

Leonard said during his closing argument that Ellis testified to obtain a shorter sentence and said Hill admitted he was much drug user and he was hopped through to drugs that day.

Norman testified Tuesday he took out the life span insurance coverage on his nephew to provide a longtime customer of the household restaurants, Waiel Rebhi Yaghnam, some business.

Yaghnam pleaded guilty in July to conspiracy to commit murder-for-hire and wire fraud in the event.

Montgomery left St. Louis after at the very least $220,000 in cash, jewelry along with other items were stolen in a June 2015 burglary at Robbie Montgomerys home.

Norman told jurors he and his mother hired an exclusive investigator to get and confront his nephew concerning the robbery but he previously no intention of hurting him.

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