American dentist is found guilty of killing his wife on their African safari
Lawrence Rudolph, 67, killed his wife, Bianca Rudolph, with a shotgun and defrauded multiple insurance companies, a federal jury found Monday.
Rudolph orchestrated his wife's death as part of a scheme to defraud life insurance companies and to allow him to live openly with his girlfriend, the FBI alleged.
Rudolph initially told the consular chief that his wife may have died by suicide, but an investigation by Zambian law enforcement ruled it an accidental discharge.
But forensic evidence showed Bianca Rudolph's wounds came from a shot fired from at least two feet away, according to a criminal complaint filed in federal court. Rudolph told investigators he heard the shot at dawn while he was in the bathroom and believed the shotgun accidentally went off as she was putting it in its case, court documents said.
An embassy official expressed suspicion after the shooting, the FBI said.
In court documents, investigators alleged Rudolph raised suspicions when he sought to quickly cremate his wife's body in Zambia.
A friend of Bianca Rudolph's asked the FBI to investigate.
But federal investigators maintained the shooting was premeditated so that Rudolph "could falsely claim the death was the result of an accident."
Milliron worked as a manager at Larry Rudolph's dental practice near Pittsburgh and told a former employee that she'd been dating him for 15 to 20 years, according to court documents.
Milliron, who was tried alongside Rudolph, said the couple had been in an open relationship, according to court documents.
The jury also found Milliron, Rudolph's girlfriend, guilty of being an accessory after the fact to murder, obstruction of justice and two counts of perjury based on her testimony before a grand jury, according to the Department of Justice.
Larry Rudolph was charged with foreign murder in the 2016 death of his wife.