Woman convicted of husband's murder, dismemberment


SANTA ANA, Calif. -- A Superior Court jury on Tuesday found a woman guilty of second-degree murder for killing her husband during a sexual game in 1991 and cutting up his body.

The jury of eight women and four men also convicted Omaima Aree Nelson, 28, of assault with a deadly weapon involving a second man, Robert Hannson, in a separate bondage sex game.


After six days of deliberations, the jury acquitted Nelson of two other charges involving the second victim: attempted robbery and false imprisonment. Nelson was accused of tying the man up and demanding money from him at gunpoint in November 1990.

The Egyptian national and former model faces a maximum sentence of 28 years to life in state prison. She is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 26 by Judge Robert R. Fitzgerald.

The Costa Mesa woman never denied killing her husband, William E. Nelson, 56, over the 1991 Thanksgiving weekend. She said she killed him in self-defense because he repeatedly beat her and raped her.

Deputy District Attorney Randolph Pawloski said he believed there was evidence to prove that Nelson committed first-degree murder.

'It's very difficult when you've got somebody cut up to say you're happy with the verdict,' Pawloski said. 'But they evidently rejected every type of defense, including battered woman and self-defense.'


Deputy Public Defender Thomas Mooney had asked the jury to convict Nelson of a lesser offense, such as manslaughter.

Mooney contended during the trial that Nelson lashed out in anger at her husband after a lifetime of mental and physical abuse by men.

But Pawloski argued that Nelson was a 'predator' who tied up and robbed older men 'under the pretenses of sexual games.'

He also said she saw her husband as a 'goldmine' who had received a $30,000 divorce settlement from a prior marriage shortly before he was killed.

Prosecutors alleged that Nelson tied up her husband during a sex game, struck him in the head about 20 times with a lamp and an iron, stabbed him and then dismembered his body.

One of her friends testified that she offered him $75,000 if he would help her get rid of her husband's remains. He phoned police instead.

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