A federal jury has found real estate developer Arthur Aslanian of Flintridge, Canada, guilty of two murders for hire and arson.

The U.S. District Court for the Central District of California made the ruling on July 7 after a five-day trial, In a press release, the Justice Department said.

According to prosecutors, Aslanian conspired with an employee, Sesar Rivera, to hire a hitman to kill the lawyer, identified in court documents as MY, who had represented Albany in bankruptcy proceedings. Slanian. Aslanian refused to pay attorneys $261,000 in legal fees. MY told Aslanian that he was prepared to sue if the fees were not paid.

The real estate developer also conspired to kill someone identified as SE in court documents. SE won a lawsuit in which Aslanian attempted to occupy the Brentwood home where SE’s parents lived.

In the summer of 2022, Rivera contacted a gang member and offered Aslanian to pay $20,000 for the murder. Rivera used Facebook Messenger to send photos and messages of the intended victim to the killer. Law enforcement uncovered the plot and issued a warning to the intended victim. On September 7, police questioned Riviera. Aslanian was arrested on September 15.

Aslanian also allegedly paid another individual hundreds of dollars to set fire to a vacant unit at Aslanian’s North Hollywood estate to evict the building’s tenants.

Aslanian, 54, was found guilty of one count of conspiracy and using an interstate facility to commit murder for hire, and another count of using an interstate commerce facility to commit murder for hire. The jury also found Aslanian guilty of one count of conspiracy to arson, one count of attempted arson and another count of setting fire to an interstate commercial building.

this North Hollywood real estate The three lots involved in the arson allegations are located in the 11000 block of Hartsook Street, just east of Lankershim Avenue in the booming NoHo arts district. Tenants of the property have filed a civil lawsuit against Aslanian alleging assault and negligent eviction of the tenants from the building. The arson plot also allegedly aimed to evict tenants so the building could be demolished and redeveloped into a 138-unit apartment complex.

U.S. District Judge Jesus Bernal has scheduled a sentencing hearing for Oct. 2. Aslanian faces up to 10 years in federal prison for each murder-for-hire-related count and up to 20 years in federal prison for each arson-related count.

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