German Man Accused in 91-Year-Old Wife's Death Seeks Dismissal

Public defender says prosecutors failed to preserve and turn over evidence that might help Albrecht Muth's defense

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    Albrecht Muth

    The German man charged in the death of his much-older wife in Georgetown is asking a judge to dismiss the case, just weeks after he said he was ready to stand trial.

    A public defender says in a new court filing that prosecutors failed to preserve and turn over evidence that might help Albrecht Muth's defense.

    The public defender was assigned to him after a judge denied Muth's request to serve as his own lawyer for the second time.

    Muth is awaiting trial in the August 2011 strangulation and beating death of his wife, Viola Drath, 91, a German-born socialite and journalist.

    At issue now is an amendment to Drath's will that Muth presented after her death, claiming he was entitled to a portion of her wealth. Prosecutors say the letter was forged.

    A defense lawyer says prosecutors have produced only one page of the letter, even though a detective has referred to "several" pages.

    A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's office declined to comment on the court filing.

    Muth is charged with first-degree murder, a charge was upgraded in a 2012 grand jury indictment that accuses him of acting with premeditation and malice.

    Muth has

    claimed that his wife's death was a "hit" ordered by Iranian agents

    and that he is a general in the Iraqi army. Neighbors said he was known as Col. Mustard and he was often seen wearing the uniform around the neighborhood, News4's Pat Collins previously reported.

    Muth was previously found incompetent to stand trial until a judge reversed that ruling.

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