A Woodside man found guilty of murdering his wife and attempting to make it look like a suicide was sentenced today to life in prison without the possibility of parole, San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said today. Pooroushash “Peter” Parineh, 56, gave a lengthy statement this afternoon reasserting his innocence and arguing that his children had driven his wife to suicide before he was sentenced, according to Wagstaffe. Parineh was found guilty in May of first-degree murder in the shooting death of his wife Parima Parineh on April 13, 2010. Parineh testified that on that day he found his 56-year-old wife’s bloody body in bed in the master bedroom of their Woodside mansion. She was shot twice in the head, with wounds that prosecutors said could not have been self-inflicted. Parineh was in dire financial straits when his wife died, according to lawyers and witnesses from both the defense and prosecution. Five of his properties were in foreclosure and he was within days of being evicted from his Woodside home. Apparently his wife had more than $30 million worth of life insurance policies in her name, which prosecutors argued provided a motive for the suicide cover-up in her murder.
The defense contested that Parima Parineh, an accomplished painter, was depressed in the months before her death and that she shot herself knowing her family was facing financial ruin. The defense argued that the gunshot would that entered from the right of her mouth and out the left side of her head might not have been fatal, allowing her to fire a second shot. At the end of the trial, which began mid-April, the jury found Parineh guilty of murder with the special circumstance of killing for financial gain and for using a firearm. The judge also today ordered Parineh to pay $10,000 in restitution and $10,000 in felony fines. Money found on his person at the time of his arrest, totaling around $1,000, was ordered turned over for restitution, Wagstaffe said.
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