A woman charged with hiring killers to brutally murder her rich husband and his mother was motivated by "jealousy, retribution and greed," according to a New York prosecutor.
The trial of Narcy Novack, 54, and her brother Cristobal Veliz, 57, opened Monday in suburban Westchester County, where her husband, Ben Novack Jr., was killed in 2009. Assailants beat him with dumbbells and slit his eyes with a knife.
Prosecutor Perry Perrone said that Narcy Novack let the hired killers slip into her hotel room while her husband slept, the Journal News reported. Narcy, who has pleaded not guilty, told police she was downstairs eating breakfast when the attackers struck.
Novack was beaten so badly during the attack that he had 20 broken ribs and a cracked skull, the Miami Herald reported. Two killers -- who have confessed and are expected to testify for the prosecution -- duct-taped Novack's mouth, leaving him to choke to death on his own vomit.
"They just didn't want him dead," said Perrone. "It was a sadistic killing."
Ben Novack, 53, whose father built the famed Fontainebleau hotel in Miami, was allegedly having an affair with an exotic dancer.
Ben Novack married Narcy, a former stripper from Ecuador, in 1991, according to the Journal News. A prenuptial agreement limited Narcy Novack to getting $65,000 from Ben if they divorced, the prosecution said. If he died, however, his entire $10 million estate would be bequeathed to her, according to the Associated Press.
Three months before Ben Novack died in the Hilton Rye Town, his mother Bernice Novack, 86, was found dead in her home in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. The death was ruled an accident, even though her jaw was broken and blood was smeared in her car and home. After her son's murder, the coroner examined new evidence from Bernice's death and determined she was beaten with a monkey wrench.
Prosecutors said the slaying of Bernice Novack was part of Narcy Novack's plot with her brother to win control of the family estate, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Novack and Veliz are charged with first-degree murder, racketeering and other charges that could put them behind bars for life if they're convicted. Like his sister, Veliz has pleaded not guilty.
Defense attorneys said Narcy Novack's daughter framed her mother and uncle in a ploy to see her sons inherit the family fortune, media outlets reported.
If Narcy Novack goes to prison, the estate is passed on to May Abad's two boys.
Veliz will testify that Abad approached him about murdering Ben Novack, his lawyer said. When he refused to participate, he alleges that Abad had him kidnapped and tortured, according to the AP.
Prosecutors said Veliz recruited the confessed hit men -- Alejandro Garcia and Joel Gonzalez -- from a Miami car wash. Veliz's attorney counters that Abad put them to work in the contract killing.
Narcy Novack will probably also take the stand. Her antics out of the courtroom have already gotten her in trouble. Last week in an interview with a reporter, she called Rye Brook police and a federal prosecutor "rat bastards."