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Rockefeller impostor on trial for murder

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Opening statements begin this week in the murder trial of a man who spent two decades impersonating a member of the fabled Rockefeller family.

A jury of seven women and five men will begin hearing from lawyers Monday.

The defendant's real name is Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter (GAYR'-hahrtz-ry-tur) and he says he is not guilty of the 27-year-old cold case killing of John Sohus.

John Sohus disappeared with his wife, Linda, in 1985 while Gerhartsreiter was a tenant at the home of Sohus' mother.

The prosecution's case is circumstantial, based on a bag of bones found buried in the backyard of the property and fuzzy memories of San Marino residents who knew the defendant under other names.

The defense says there was no motive for the defendant to kill anyone. No trace has been found of Linda Sohus.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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