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  • Saturday, 24 February 2024
Alex Murdaugh faced life sentence for murder even if 'Mother Teresa' begged for mercy: defense

Alex Murdaugh faced life sentence for murder even if 'Mother Teresa' begged for mercy: defense

Alex Murdaugh, a prominent South Carolina lawyer who is accused of organizing his own shooting in a botched insurance fraud scheme, could face a life sentence even if a "Mother Teresa" begged for mercy, his defense lawyer said. Murdaugh, a member of a prominent family in the state, was arrested on charges of insurance fraud, conspiracy to commit insurance fraud, and filing a false police report after he reported being shot in the head on a rural road. But investigators say Murdaugh paid a man to kill him so his son could collect a $10 million insurance policy. The alleged shooter, Curtis Edward Smith, was also arrested and charged.

Murdaugh's defense attorney, Dick Harpootlian, told the court that the case was "about a man who fell from grace and is being prosecuted for crimes he committed, but is also being persecuted for things he didn't do." He argued that Murdaugh had a drug addiction and was struggling with the death of his wife and son in a 2018 shooting. "This is a man who would have never committed this crime if he was sober," Harpootlian said. "But the drug addiction drove him to do things he otherwise wouldn't have done."

Prosecutors, however, argued that Murdaugh's actions were premeditated and calculated, and that he should be held accountable for his crimes. "This defendant knew exactly what he was doing," said Assistant Attorney General Creighton Waters. "He created this scheme and set it into motion with full knowledge of the consequences."

The judge denied Murdaugh's request for bond, citing the severity of the charges against him and his potential flight risk. The case has drawn national attention due to Murdaugh's prominent status in the legal community and his family's connections to South Carolina politics. Murdaugh's father and grandfather were both prominent attorneys, and his family has been involved in politics for generations.

In other news, the United States and China have pledged to work together to combat climate change, despite ongoing tensions between the two countries on other issues. The agreement was reached during a virtual meeting between U.S. climate envoy John Kerry and his Chinese counterpart, Xie Zhenhua.

The two sides discussed ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase the use of renewable energy sources. They also discussed the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference, which will be held in Glasgow in November.

"We hope that our two countries can work together to find ways to collaborate on climate action, even as we continue to address other differences," Kerry said. "The climate crisis is a global challenge that requires global cooperation, and we believe that the United States and China can and should play a leading role in that effort."

The meeting comes as the United States is seeking to reestablish its leadership on climate change after four years of inaction under former President Donald Trump. President Joe Biden has pledged to make climate change a top priority of his administration, and has already taken several steps to reduce emissions and promote renewable energy.

China, which is the world's largest emitter of greenhouse gases, has also made significant strides in recent years to reduce its carbon footprint. The country has set a goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2060, and has pledged to increase its use of renewable energy sources.

Alex Murdaugh, a prominent South Carolina lawyer who is accused of organizing his own shooting in a botched insurance fraud scheme, could face a life sentence even if a "Mother Teresa" begged for mercy, his defense lawyer said. Murdaugh, a member of a prominent family in the state, was arrested on charges of insurance fraud, conspiracy to commit insurance fraud, and filing a false police report after he reported being shot in the head on a rural road. But investigators say Murdaugh paid a man to kill him so his son could collect a $10 million insurance policy. The alleged shooter, Curtis Edward Smith, was also arrested and charged.

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