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Testimony ends in Maryland murder trial over fire in secret tunnels

Associated Press

Jurors are set to hear closing arguments in the trial of a wealthy stock trader charged with murder in the death of a man who was helping him dig tunnels for an underground nuclear bunker.

Defense attorney Robert Bonsib said his client, 27-year-old Daniel Beckwitt, didn't testify before prosecutors and defense lawyers finished presenting evidence from witnesses Wednesday. Attorneys are scheduled to give closing arguments Tuesday.

Beckwitt is charged with second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter in the September 2017 death of 21-year-old Askia Khafra.

Khafra died in a fire that broke out as the two were secretly digging the tunnels at Beckwitt's Bethesda home.

During the trial's opening statements, a prosecutor said Beckwitt sacrificed safety for secrecy. Bonsib told jurors the fire was an accident, not a crime.

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