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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Grandmother Suspected of Trying to Kill 11-Year-Old

A Moscow region woman has been arrested on suspicion of ordering a contract hit on her 11-year-old granddaughter and her son's widow, with whom she shares an apartment, prosecutors said Friday.

Police arrested the 58-year-old woman on Thursday in the industrial town of Lyubertsy, just southwest of Moscow, after she handed over 10,000 rubles ($386) to an undercover officer and promised to pay an additional 20,000 rubles when she saw the bodies in person, said Yelena Rossokhina, spokeswoman for the Moscow regional prosecutor's office.

The woman, whose name has not been released because of the ongoing investigation, will likely be charged with attempted murder within 10 days, Rossokhina said. If charged and convicted, she faces up to life in prison.

Investigators have not established a motive, but Rossokhina said the woman had long had a poor relationship with her son's widow. The two live in a two-room apartment with the granddaughter.

"The son died of a heart attack a few years ago, and his mother believed that it was the daughter-in-law's fault," Rossokhina said.

But investigators are not ruling out the possibility that the woman wanted to assume full ownership of the apartment, split between the three residents.

The woman hired a migrant worker, who was renting a room from her in a separate apartment, to organize the double-murder, promising to pay him 30,000 rubles, Rossokhina said. "She said she would prefer them to be poisoned by gas fumes or to die from a drug overdose," she said.

The tenant, however, apparently went to the police, who organized a sting operation with an undercover policeman posing as the hired killer. The undercover policeman showed staged pictures of the bodies to convince the grandmother that the victims were dead, but she handed over only 10,000 rubles, saying she would pay the rest only when she saw the bodies, Rossokhina said.