Albrecht Muth Says He's Ready for Trial in Death of 91-Year-Old Wife

Muth says he plans to act as his own lawyer

By Eric Tucker
|  Monday, Oct 7, 2013  |  Updated 4:20 PM EDT
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Man Charged in Death of 91-Year-Old Wife Wants Trial

William Hennessy

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A German man charged with killing his 91-year-old wife says he's ready for trial despite a fast that he acknowledges has weakened him.

Albrecht Muth says in a handwritten letter to the judge that he is "willing, able and ready" for a trial starting in December. He says he plans to act as his own lawyer.

The 49-year-old Muth is charged with the 2011 murder of his wife, socialite and journalist Viola Drath, a former Washington Times contributor.

Drath was found dead in her Georgetown home on Q Street in November 2011.

At the time, Muth, her second husband, said she fell and hit her head, listing her cause of her death as "head trauma from a fall" in an obituary submitted to the Washington Post.

Investigators said Drath's injuries were inconsistent with a fall.

Since then, Muth -- who claims he is a brigadier general in the Iraqi army -- has said that his wife was killed in an Iranian hit job.

According to court documents, Muth was charged with assaulting Drath in 2006, hitting her head with a chair, pounding her head into the floor several times and sitting on her for five to 10 minutes, News4's Pat Collins reported. Those charges were dropped.

In jail, Muth has been starving himself intermittently for religious reasons, and though he tells the judge that it is "somewhat weakening me," he says he's following the "Holy Orders of the Eternal Father."

Doctors previously said that he was incompetent to stand trial, but he was ruled competent in December 2012.

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