Dentist Found Guilty of Hiring Hitmen to Kill Former Brother-in-Law in Custody Dispute
A dentist in Florida, Charlie Adelson, has been convicted of hiring hitmen to murder his former brother-in-law, Florida State law professor Dan Markel, in 2014. Adelson was found guilty of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, and solicitation of first-degree murder by a jury after just three hours of deliberation. Adelson allegedly hired hitmen to kill Markel amid a contentious child custody dispute between Markel and Adelson’s sister, Wendi. This case is shocking and raises questions about the lengths people will go to during child custody battles.
The Custody Battle
Markel and Adelson’s sister, Wendi, were locked in a bitter custody battle over their two children. Wendi wanted to move the children to Miami after their divorce to be closer to her family, but Markel refused to consent to the move. This caused tension between the two, and Adelson allegedly wanted to help his sister win the custody battle, resulting in the hiring of hitmen to kill Markel.
The Murder Plot
Charlie Adelson and his mother Donna were allegedly the masterminds behind the murder plot. They used Katherine Magbanua, Charlie’s girlfriend at the time, as an intermediary to hire Sigfredo Garcia and Luis Rivera, the hitmen who carried out the murder. Rivera eventually pleaded guilty to the crime and was sentenced to 19 years in prison. Garcia was found guilty in 2019 and sentenced to life in prison plus 30 years for the conspiracy. Magbanua was also found guilty and sentenced to life in prison, although her first trial resulted in a hung jury, and she is now appealing her conviction. During his trial, Adelson claimed that he had nothing to do with the plot to murder Markel and that Magbanua acted alone, but prosecutors proved otherwise, and he was found guilty of all charges.
The murder of Dan Markel raised concerns about the handling of child custody disputes and the potential for violence in such cases. Lawmakers have since introduced legislation aimed at addressing concerns about the safety of parents and children during custody battles. Additionally, this case highlights the danger of using intermediaries to carry out crimes and the importance of thorough investigations to bring all responsible parties to justice.
The murder of Dan Markel was a tragic event that stemmed from a contentious child custody battle and the desperate actions of those involved. The conviction of Charlie Adelson goes to show that justice will be served, no matter how long it takes, and that even the most well-planned murder schemes will eventually be uncovered. This case should serve as a warning to those who may be considering similar actions and as a call to action for lawmakers to better protect families and children during custody battles.
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