Tatarstan's top court has sentenced a former stripper to five years in prison for hiring a hit man to kill her husband and his mother for their property, investigators said.
But the husband and his mother told the Supreme Court that they forgave her and begged that she receive the lightest-possible punishment.
The wife, Albina Sharipova, 24, met her husband, Alexei Guzhov, 37, over the Internet last year while she was working as a striptease dancer, the court heard.
"He spent about 160,000 rubles [$5,500] on her over two or three months, and she liked that life" and proposed marriage, chief investigator Pavel Serov told Channel One.
But after Guzhov lost his job, Sharipova decided to kill him and his mother immediately after the marriage to inherit the family's three apartments and SUV, the television report said. She asked a friend to put her in contact with a hit man, but the friend went to the police.
Investigators sent the friend and a bogus hit man to meet with Sharipova, who offered her VAZ-2114 car and provided $100, 100 euros and 2,100 rubles upfront as payment, the local Investigative Committee
Police informed a stunned Guzhov about the plot and, after seeing the evidence, he and his mother agreed to fake their own deaths in a sting operation. On Nov. 6, the stand-in killer brought Sharipova pictures of her supposedly deceased new relatives — by that time, the couple had already been wed.
When she handed over the deed to her car, police swooped in and arrested her. She was charged with "preparation for the organization of murder by contract." Eventually, she fully confessed to the crime.
It was that complete confession as well as pleas by her relatives that led to the especially light sentencing of five years in prison, plus one year probation, on Friday, Channel One
"The devil led me astray," Sharipova said in her final words to the court. "I beg you not to take away my opportunity to be of use to my family."
"He really loves her. He knew, when he entered the marriage, who she is," prosecutor Ildar Mukhamedzynov told Channel One. "And, knowing that she organized the murder not just of him but also his mother, he has treated her very kindly."
Guzhov has not filed for divorce. He declined to comment to reporters, saying only, "It's a personal matter."