(HOUSTON) — Charges of soliciting murder have been dropped against prominent Houston lawyer Jeffrey Stern, who was about to go on trial for allegedly plotting with his mistress to kill his wife.
Stern’s former mistress, Michelle Gaiser has already pleaded guilty that she had hatched a plot with Stern to kill his wife Yvonne and is serving a 25 year prison term. In exchange for her guilty plea and cooperation with the government, prosecutors agreed to reduce her possible life sentence to a maximum of 25 years in prison.
Stern, 55, was expected to go on trial this month for the attempts on his wife’s life.
All charges against the wealthy attorney were dismissed over “insufficient corroboration of accomplice witness testimony” by a Texas court today.
“This has been a case in which the evidence has continuously evolved,” First Assistant District Attorney Jim Leitner said in a statement today. “We have remained true to our mission by examining information objectively, weighing our decisions carefully, and acting prudently. Ultimately we have come to the conclusion that, at this point, the available evidence is not sufficient to justify taking this case to trial.”
Last month, Stern’s attorneys held a press conference to state they had information that Gaiser, 39, was trying to have Stern killed from behind bars.
Stern’s lawyer, Paul Nugent, applauded the prosecution’s decision.
“Upon a final review of their case, the Harris County District Attorney’s Office realized there was not credible evidence to proceed and has dismissed all charges against Jeff Stern,” Nugent said in a statement.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Elise Labott, Kevin Liptak and Patrick Oppmann, CNN
Ray Sanchez, CNN
Ivana Kottasova, CNN