Narcy Novack, brother, guilty of Fontainebleau hotel heir murder

FILE - This 2010 file photo provided by the Broward Sheriff's Office shows Narcy Novack of Fort Lauderdale, Flor. Novack was found guilty Wednesday, June 20, 2012, of orchestrating the killings of her millionaire husband, Ben Novack Jr., and his mother, Bernice Novack, in a grab for the family estate.
File,AP Photo/Broward Sheriff's Office
Narcy Novack
File, AP Photo/Broward Sheriff's Office

(CBS/AP) WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. - Florida widow Narcy Novack and her brother were found guilty Wednesday of orchestrating the killings of the woman's wealthy husband and his mother in a grab for the family estate.

A federal jury said Novack, of Fort Lauderdale, caused the savage 2009 beatings of Ben Novack Jr. in a suburban New York hotel room, and of his mother Bernice Novack at her Fort Lauderdale home.

Novack and her brother, Cristobal Veliz of New York City, both were convicted of charges including racketeering, domestic violence, stalking, money laundering and witness tampering.

Both were acquitted of the charge of murder in aid of racketeering, which would have carried a mandatory life sentence.

Jurors said they had been instructed that to convict on that count the killing had to be part of a robbery, which they said wasn't proven.

The defendants still could get up to life in prison when sentenced Nov. 1.

Prosecutors said Novack and Veliz were motivated by "jealousy, retribution and greed" when they hired the thugs who carried out the killings. They said Novack feared that her husband, who was having an affair, would divorce her, and that a prenuptial agreement would bar her from the multimillion-dollar family estate.

Ben Novack Jr. had a successful travel company. His father built the storied Fontainebleau hotel in Miami Beach, a celebrity hangout in the 1950s and `60s that was seen in the movies "Scarface" and "Goldfinger."

The defense had tried to blame the killings on Narcy Novack's daughter, whose sons will now inherit the estate.

Complete Coverage of Ben Novack Jr. Murder Trial on Crimesider