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Crime & Courts

California jury reaches verdict in case of man charged with killing ex-girlfriend's family

A Southern California jury has reached a verdict in the case of a man charged with killing his ex-girlfriend's father and sister and slashing her mother's throat.

Deliberations began Thursday and concluded Friday in the trial of 29-year-old Iftekhar Murtaza (ihf-TEHK-ar muhr-TAH-zuh).

The verdict is expected to be read at 1:45 p.m. PST.

Prosecutors say Murtaza carried out the 2007 killings in a plot to reunite with girlfriend Shayona Dhanak (shy-OWN-uh DAH'-nock). She blamed their breakup on her Hindu relatives and his Muslim faith.

The family's Anaheim Hills home was torched and Dhanak's mother left for dead. The bodies of Dhanak's father and sister were found the next day. Her mother testified at the trial.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for Murtaza, who is charged with murder, attempted murder and conspiracy.

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