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A federal jury convicted a woman on Wednesday for directing hitmen to beat to death her husband and his mother, heirs to a famed luxury Miami hotel, in an attempt to seize her husband's assets.
Narcy Novack, 55, and her brother Cristobal Veliz, 58, were found guilty of charges related to the grisly and fatal beatings in 2009 of Ben Novack Jr, and Bernice Novack, members of the family that built the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida, prosecutors said.
The verdict came after a nine-week jury trial at US District Court for Southern District of New York in White Plains. Narcy Novack and Veliz were convicted of racketeering, conspiracy, and four counts of violent crime in aid of racketeering.
Both face up to life in prison in sentencing set for November 1.
“These defendants, modern day “public enemies,” planned, orchestrated, enlisted accomplices and assisted in the brutal killing of Ben Novack, Jr ... and his mother,” Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore said in a joint statement made with the US Attorney's office.
Ben Novack Jr, 52, was the son of the man who built the sprawling hotel in Miami Beach in 1952. The resort has provided the backdrop for scenes in films such as “Goldfinger,” “The Body Guard,” and “Scarface.”
Prosecutors said Narcy Novack and her brother were motivated by greed when they hired the hit men.
Ben Novack Jr died of asphyxiation and blunt force trauma in July 2009 in a hotel room in Rye Brook, New York, after two of the men hired by Narcy Novak and Veliz struck him with dumbbells and used a box cutter to cut his eyes, the statement said.
Narcy Novack, who let the men into the hotel room, gave them a pillow to muffle her husband's screams as they used duct tape to cover his mouth and tied him up, the statement said.
Bernice Novack, 86, was attacked in April 2009 in the garage of her home in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. She was hit in the head and mouth with a monkey wrench and died shortly after on the floor of her home, the statement said.
After the deaths, Narcy Novack stole about $100 000 from her husband's company and laundered most of the funds through bank accounts in Florida and New York, the statement said.
Both of the men who carried out the attacks have pleaded guilty and await sentencing. - Reuters