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US tycoon Robert Durst, sentenced to life in prison for murder, is on ventilator life support after contracting COVID-19, according to a US media report. Durst's attorney, Dick DeGuerin, was quoted by the Los Angeles Times as saying his client was in "very bad condition" during the sentencing hearing.
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The 78-year-old US millionaire was sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole after a jury found him guilty of killing his friend, Susan Berman, in 2000 at her Beverly Hills home. The motive was to keep her from talking to police about the disappearance of his wife two decades earlier.
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The real-estate tycoon reportedly shot Berman at her house in Los Angeles back in 2000. Prosecutors claim that Durst killed Berman to stop her from revealing the truth about the disappearance of Durst's first wife, Kathleen McCormack, in 1982. McCormack was never found.
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The lawyers allege that Berman had furnished Durst with an alibi after he killed his first wife; this second murder was an attempt to keep the first one hidden. Durst was arrested in New Orleans in 2015 – he was handcuffed on the day that an HBO documentary about him called ‘The Jinx’ aired.
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The sensational trial began in early 2020, but then COVID-19 forced a pause in proceedings; it resumed in May 2021 after a 14-month delay. This is not Durst’s first time facing murder accusations; he was tried in 2001 over the murder of his Texas neighbour Morris Black, but he claimed self-defense and was acquitted.
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It has also been alleged that the businessman had support from his family. Durst's father and brother were accused of assisting in the alleged murder of his wife who went missing in 1982.
Image Credit: Gary Coronado/Los Angeles Times via AP, Pool, File
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Durst is worth $65 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth. Dust earned his bachelor's degree from Lehigh University and went on to work as a real estate developer. He is the brother of commercial developer Douglas Durst and the son of New York real estate billionaire Seymour Durst.
Image Credit: (Photo by Myung J. Chun / POOL / AFP)