Edgar Steele guilty in murder-for-hire plot

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by Associated Press

KREM.com

Posted on May 5, 2011 at 11:48 AM

Updated Thursday, May 5 at 5:57 PM

BOISE, Idaho -- A murder-for-hire trial comes to an emotional end.  A federal jury convicted Edgar Steele on Thursday of plotting to kill his wife and mother-in-law.  But Steele's wife vows to set the record straight.  The Boise jury found Edgar Steele guilty on all four counts.

The trial was moved to Boise for fairness at the request of the defense.  Despite those efforts, Cyndi Steele said her husband's trial was some kind of federal government conspiracy.

"They took our life and turned it into an ugly story, it is farthest from the truth," said Cyndi.

The story began when a mechanic found a pipe bomb under Cyndi Steele's car.  Investigators said a hired hand, Larry Fairfax, planted the bomb at the request of her husband, Edgar Steele.

"I am the wife, the proud wife of Edgar J. Steele, and I am here to tell you that this is a cover-up, a frame-up to cover-up Larry Fairfax's crime against me," said Cyndi. 
 
The defense argued Fairfax planted the bomb to cover-up a theft of silver coins.  But the jury didn't buy it.  Fairfax eventually took a plea deal with prosecutors.  A large portion of the FBI's case rested on taped recording.  Investigators said it was Steele and Fairfax discussing the murder plot.

"It was the court system that would not allow our expert that knows that those tapes are falsified, which I could hear.  But they don't want to allow it in because they don't want to hear the truth," argued Cyndi.

The audio expert the defense wanted was on vacation.  Several key players did testify including Fairfax and Cyndi Steele.  Edgar Steele never took the stand. 

"This is not the end because I will fight and support him.  And no, I don't have Stockholm syndrome because that is a line nobody would cross with me.  Because this is my life at stake and I was never in any danger from my husband," vowed Cyndi.

Prosecutors said the motive for Steele's attempted murder of his wife was simple jealousy.  The allege Cyndi had a boyfriend which enraged Edgar and that he had a Ukrainian love interest.

The plot to kill Cyndi would free him and allow for a large collection of insurance money.  Cyndi maintains this is all a conspiracy against her husband because he defended the Aryan Nations.

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