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Rockefeller impostor Christian Gerhartsreiter guilty of murder

Christian Gerhartsreiter, who pretended to be a descendant of the Rockefeller family, was convicted of murdering John Sohus in 1985.

Rockefeller impostor guilty 2013 04 10Enlarge
Christian Gerhartsreiter listens to prosecutors on March 18, 2013, during his murder trial in Los Angeles Superior Court. The Rockefeller impostor was convicted on April 10, 2013, of killing his landlady's son, John Sohus, in 1985. (JOE KLAMAR/AFP/Getty Images)

A man who posed as a member of the famous Rockefeller family was found guilty today of first-degree murder in the 1985 death of a California man.

Christian Gerhartsreiter, a 52-year-old German native, was charged with murdering 27-year-old computer programmer John Sohus and burying him in the backyard of a southern California home nearly three decades ago.

More from GlobalPost: Rockefeller impostor facing murder charge

Gerhartsreiter left California following the disappearance of Sohus and his wife, Linda.

In the years since then, he adopted many names, including Clark Rockefeller, and conned his way into elite New England social circles.

He also claimed to be a TV and film producer and Wall Street tycoon.

More from GlobalPost: Rockefeller conman trial to start Monday

Gerhartsreiter has maintained his innocence since pool contractors found a dismembered skull identified as Sohus in 1994.

The skull was found in two plastic bags outside the guest house Gerhartsreiter rented from Sohus' mother in the affluent Los Angeles suburb of San Marino.

Linda Sohus has never been found, though prosecutors believe Gerhartsreiter killed her too.

Defense attorneys argued their client was a simple con-man who committed only petty crimes, and pointed to Linda Sohus as the main suspect.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/130410/rockefeller-impostor-christian-gerhartsreiter-gu