2 convicted of murder charged in hit plot

November 20, 2008 5:34:20 AM PST
Two men in Ocean County are accused of seeking the death of the state's key witness from behind bars days after they were convicted of murder. James Russell and Jamal Scott also are accused of orchestrating the murder of the mother of the witness' girlfriend hours before their trial started.

Prosecutors say Russell and Scott are charged as accomplices in the murder of Athelma Scott. They're also charged with conspiring to murder Vasquez, her daughter and the daughter's boyfriend, who was the witness.

An accomplice and the man accused of pulling the trigger also are under arrest.

Officials are not saying how the men could have coordinated the plot from inside the county jail.

Russell, Scott and a third defendant were convicted Monday of murdering a man in front of customers in a Lakewood barbershop in 2006.

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