VAN NUYS (CBSLA.com) — A Woodland Hills man who used a machete to torture his estranged wife and a former music industry executive while holding them hostage has been sentenced to 25 years in prison.
Behnam Vasseghi, 58, was sentenced Monday immediately after pleading no contest to two counts each of attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon and making criminal threats and one count each of first-degree burglary, stalking and corporal injury to a spouse, according to court records. Various other counts, including torture and aggravated mayhem, were dismissed as part of the plea agreement.
Gigi Vasseghi had a restraining order against her estranged husband when he went to her new boyfriend Jerry Sharell’s Woodland Hills home on Sept. 15 last year, the LAPD reported.
Vasseghi reportedly held the two for more than five hours, interrogating Sharell and slashing his neck when he got answers that upset him.
Gigi Vasseghi was able to escape and call police, but not before her estranged husband cut off the tip of her nose, authorities said.
Before surrendering to police, Vasseghi slashed his own wrists.
Sharell was taken to a hospital in critical condition and was able to recover. Gigi Vasseghi was treated for minor injuries.
Sharell formerly worked with such acts as the Eagles and the Carpenters. He now hosts a weekly radio show on KJazz titled “Sundays with Sinatra.”
He was hired by David Geffen in the 1970s to manage the Asylum Records label, which later became part of Elektra Records, where he worked with Jackson Browne, Harry Chapin, Carly Simon, The Cars, Queen, Motley Crue and Bread, among other acts.
Sharell later became a vice president at Westwood One radio network, and also chaired The Recording Academy’s MusiCares Foundation.
Vasseghi has been behind bars on $5.1 million bail since the day of the attack.
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