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The Daily Herald (Utah): Handyman convicted in killing of Utah couple

Monday, March 06, 2006
The Associated Press
RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil — A handyman has been convicted and sentenced to 25 years in prison for killing an American couple bludgeoned to death in bed, authorities said Sunday.
Jossiel Conceicao dos Santos, 22, was convicted on Friday of killing a Shell oil executive and his wife in 2003, said Luis Carlos Puglialli, a spokesman with Rio's justice department.
Defense attorneys planned to appeal, Puglialli said.
The couple — Todd and Michelle Staheli — were beaten to death in bed at home in an exclusive Rio de Janeiro neighborhood on Nov. 30, 2003. The couple from Spanish Fork, who left behind four young children, had been in Brazil for three months.
With nothing robbed and no signs of forced entry, the case stumped police for months before dos Santos was arrested in April 2004, after allegedly trying to break into another home in the area.
Dos Santos confessed to the killings but later recanted, and a judge at one point released him without charges, citing a lack of physical evidence.
Initial DNA tests failed to link dos Santos to the crime, but further tests on clothing turned up traces of blood from both victims.
This story appeared in The Daily Herald on page A1.

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