July 14 (UPI) -- A South Carolina grand jury on Thursday indicted disgraced attorney Alex Murdaugh in the shooting deaths of his wife and youngest son -- adding onto other criminal charges that have been piling up for almost a year.
The South Carolina Attorney General's Office and State Law Enforcement Division announced the indictment of the once-prominent attorney who now faces 16 indictments over the past nine months, which include financial crimes and embezzlement.
"All the efforts of our office and the law enforcement agencies involved in this investigation have been focused on seeking justice for the victims' families," SLED chief Mark Keel said according to WYFF-TV.
"Over the last 13 months, SLED agents and our partners have worked day in and day out to build a case against the person responsible for the murders of Maggie and Paul and to exclude those who were not. At no point did agents lose focus on this investigation.
"From the beginning I have been clear, the priority was to ensure justice was served."
Murdaugh has denied any involvement in the shootings of his wife and son, who were killed in July 2021. He is also being investigated for botched attempted suicide and defrauding the family of a housekeeper who mysteriously died in 2018.
"Alex wants his family, friends and everyone to know that he did not have anything to do with the murders of Maggie and Paul," defense attorneys Dick Harpootlian and Jim Griffin said in a joint statement. "He loved them more than anything in the world.
"It was very clear from day one that law enforcement and the attorney general prematurely concluded that Alex was responsible for the murder of his wife and son. But we know that Alex did not have any motive whatsoever to murder them."
A few months ago, a different grand jury indicted Murdaugh of misappropriating $2.27 million of his clients' money. Other charges were filed last year accusing him of defrauding 17 victims out of $9 million in insurance settlements between 2011 and 2017.
Authorities also said the Murdaugh investigation has led them to reassess the hit-and-run death of a 19-year-old man in 2015.
Murdaugh's family is well known in South Carolina. His father, grandfather and great-grandfather were elected prosecutors in Hampton County for almost 90 years.