A Massachusetts man has been accused of attempting to hire someone — who was actually an undercover federal agent — to kill a woman who was seeking a restraining order.
Massimo Marenghi, 54, of Malden, was charged Friday with one count of murder-for-hire. His case was referred to a federal magistrate judge.
A lawyer who could speak on Marenghi's behalf was not listed in court documents. A listed number for Marenghi was out of service, and a message seeking comment was left for the assistant U.S. attorney assigned to the case.
According to a police affidavit, someone reported to police that Marenghi had complained about the woman seeking a restraining order against him. Marenghi allegedly asked the individual for help in killing her.
The individual, at the direction of federal agents, introduced Marenghi to an undercover agent who posed as a contract killer, according to the affidavit.
Marenghi met with the undercover agent on Jan. 20 in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and allegedly sought help to “eliminate" his problem, the affidavit said. They discussed a price of $10,000. Marenghi provided the agent with a photo of the woman's home and explained how to evade detection by cameras.
The U.S. attorney's office also alleges that Marenghi again met with the undercover agent on Friday and provided $1,500 as a deposit for the killing. He said the sooner the “demolition job" takes place, the sooner he would pay the balance owed, officials said.
He allegedly provided a photo of the woman, the hours of operation of her place of business and a scheduled indicating the “best time for the construction work to start," officials said.