Convicted killer Jodi Arias is targeting the man who once stood by her side during the trial of her lover’s death but then told the world his account of the case.
The now 37-year-old former waitress is serving life in prison in Arizona for the murder of Travis Alexander, found dead at his home in Mesa.
Her 2013 and 2015 trials, which included tales of rough sex before the killing, grabbed headlines nationwide, and on Tuesday she sued her attorney Laurence Kirk Nurmi for capitalizing on the attention with a self-published book.
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“Trapped with Ms. Arias” already contributed to Nurmi, appointed to the case before entering private practice, losing his license to practice law after it disclosed confidences from his client.
Nurmi’s stance at trial, criticized by observers, was that Arias was protecting herself from her allegedly abusive ex-boyfriend when she stabbed him.
He said in his book, written without permission, that the plan was Arias’s, and gave his own view on her guilt.
“He wrote the book in a selfish attempt to "redeem" his public image and enrich himself to the extreme detriment of Ms. Arias,” her new lawyers said in the Maricopa County suit.
RELATED: Most famous US crime trials over the past 25 years
Most famous US crime trials over the past 25 years
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(Photo credit AFP/Getty Images)
Casey Anthony: Not guilty in the murder of daughter Caylee Anthony
Casey Anthony (R) reacts to being found not guilty on murder charges at the Orange County Courthouse on July 5, 2011 in Orlando, Florida. At left is her attorney Jose Baez. Casey Anthony had been accused of murdering her two-year-old daughter Caylee in 2008. (Photo by Red Huber-Pool/Getty Images)
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The current inmate also alleges that Nurmi had an “unprofessional and prurient interest in the sexual nature of the case” as well as Arias.
Nurmi allegedly told his client that he had made blow ups of nude pictures shown at trial that he put in his office and used one of them as his computer screen saver.
The suit asks for Nurmi to give up any money he has made from the book.
In response he said that he wrote the book only after being diagnosed with cancer, as a way to “mitigate the damage” of his former client’s “lies.”
“Standing up to the abuse Ms. Arias imparted upon me over the years was an important part of my personal transformation and I will continue to fight this battle with vigor as I defend against this lawsuit which is best viewed as a continuation of Ms. Arias’s pattern of attacking men whom she feels have wronged her,” Nurmi said in a statement to the Arizona Republic.
“Of course, no one person has suffered at the hands of Ms. Arias (more) than Mr. Alexander and I look forward to clearing the air on all the derogatory assertions that Ms. Arias made about him as I defend against the outrageous claims made in this lawsuit.”