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A jury in South Carolina has reached a verdict of guilty on all counts after just three hours of deliberations in the case of disgraced former attorney Alex Murdaugh, who is accused of murdering his wife and son in 2021. 

Murdaugh was charged with four counts: the murder of Maggie Murdaugh, the murder of Paul Murdaugh, and two counts of possession of a weapon during a crime. Those charges carry a potential penalty of up to 30 years to life. Murdaugh still faces another trial in the future over numerous financial crimes.

Jurors started deliberations Thursday afternoon following weeks of testimony from dozens of witnesses in a sprawling case that culminated in a visit to the crime scene, the family’s rural hunting estate Moselle, ahead of closing arguments.

Over the course of the trial, the number of alternates dwindled to one, following dismissals for medical reasons and, in one case, speaking about the case. That juror was removed during closing arguments.

Prosecutors argued that Murdaugh killed his wife and son because he feared his years of stealing millions of dollars from his law firm and clients would be exposed and his lofty standing in the community toppled. They said he hoped their deaths would make him a sympathetic figure. 

Murdaugh’s defense argued that investigators were so determined to get him convicted of murder, they focused solely on him and conducted the investigation so poorly that any evidence pointing to someone else — like fingerprints or possible DNA on Maggie or Paul Murdaugh’s clothing — was never gathered.

Murdaugh also faces nearly 100 charges against him for various financial crimes, including fraud, money laundering, tax evasion and forgery, and is accused of stealing more than $8 million and trying to get a man to kill him in a $10 million life insurance scheme. While he admitted to some of these crimes on the stand during this trial, legal proceedings in those cases are still ahead. 

This is a developing story and will be updated.