By Associated Press - Friday, November 17, 2017

TROY, N.Y. (AP) - A 40-year-old man has been found guilty of strangling his 21-year-old stepdaughter with a plastic shopping bag and stashing her body in a suitcase that was found floating in the Hudson River.

A Rensselaer County jury returned the verdict convicting Johnny Oquendo Friday after less than three hours of deliberation. Oquendo was charged with killing Noel Alkaramla in his Troy apartment in November 2015. Her body was found on Dec. 30, 2015.

The defense argued Oquendo had no motive to kill the woman, and tried to discredit the chief witness by saying she had a grudge against Oquendo and had mental health issues. The prosecution showed surveillance video of someone hauling a suitcase toward the river.

Oquendo faces a maximum sentence of 25 years to life in prison.

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