OJ Simpson faces life in prison after being found guilty of armed robbery
OJ Simpson has been found guilty of kidnap and armed robbery – and could face the rest of his life in prison.
Thirteen years to the day he was cleared of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman, former American football star OJ Simpson was found guilty on all 12 charges, including counts of armed robbery and kidnapping with a deadly weapon.
The charges relate to an attempt by Simpson and five accomplices to recover sports memorabilia and family heirlooms from two dealers in a Las Vegas hotel room.
Simpson, 61, looked distressed and friends and family broke down in tears as the verdict – which took 13 hours’ deliberation after a three-and-half week trial – was read out by a jury of nine white women and three white men.
The families of the victims of the 1994 murders had a very different reaction, and feel it’s finally justice for the man who they believe murdered Ron and Nicole. Ron’s father Fred Goldman told CNN that his family is ‘thrilled to see the potential that he could serve the rest of his life in jail where the scumbag belongs.’
In the latest trial, prosecutors argued that his confrontation with the memorabilia dealers was part of a decade-long effort to hide his valuables after he was ordered to pay $33.5 million in a civil lawsuit brought against him by the Goldman family.
Simpson was led out of court with his co-defendant Clarence Stewart and taken to Clark County Detention Centre, where he was issued with a jail jumpsuit and taken to his 7’ by 14’ cell. The jail that will be his final destination will be decided by a judge on 5 December.
Simpson’s lawyers, however, have announced an appeal, which will focus on the fact there were no blacks in the jury, and on possible bias in the jury by people who believe he was guilty of double murder.
The key issue in the case was whether Simpson knew that some of the men who accompanied him were carrying guns as they stormed the hotel room to recover items he says were his.
Simpson insists he didn’t know anyone was carrying a gun, but the prosecution claimed he was the ringleader of an organized armed heist against his former agent and a man he believed had stolen his property.
Five of the jurors have admitted they believe he was wrongly acquitted of murder, which will doubtless strengthen defense claims that OJ has been made to pay the price now for his acquittal 13 years ago.