14 Apr 2009

Spector convicted of murder

9:45 am on 14 April 2009

US music producer Phil Spector has been convicted of murdering an actress at his home four years ago.

Spector, 67, famous for the "Wall of Sound" recording technique, faces between 15 years and life in prison.

He had pleaded not guilty to the second degree murder of Lana Clarkson, 40, at his home in Los Angeles.

The trial, at the city's Superior Court, lasted five months and saw 77 witnesses take the stand.

Second degree murder falls between first degree murder, which requires proof of pre-meditation, and manslaughter.

A former B-movie actress, Clarkson had been working as a hostess at the House of Blues venue in Los Angeles, and went home with Spector on the night of her death.

She was found dead in the foyer of his house in the early hours of 3 February, 2003.

The producer was taken into custody about 40 minutes after the shooting and had to be subdued by officers using a stun gun.

The trial also heard from a number of women who said Spector had threatened them with guns in the past.

Defence lawyers had argued that Ms Clarkson's death was a suicide.

Spector himself decided not to give evidence.

The BBC reports the two sides in the trial closed their cases on 7 September.