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OC man accused of hiring hit men to murder wife

WESTMINSTER, Calif. (AP) -- Orange County prosecutors say a Westminster man who was facing and later convicted of domestic violence charges hired hit men to murder his wife so he could avoid a costly divorce.

Deputy District Attorney Sonia Balleste said Tuesday that 60-year-old Magdi Girgis was arrested Friday and charged with three felonies stemming from the Sept. 2004 killing of 55-year-old Ariet Girgis.

Two suspects allegedly entered the victim's home and murdered her with a sharp object.

A few days before her death, she had testified in the domestic violence case against her husband. He was convicted after her death.

Prosecutors say additional arrests are imminent in the ongoing investigation.

If convicted of all charges, Girgis faces a minimum sentence of life in prison without parole. He's also eligible for the death penalty.

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