Man pleads not guilty in slayings of brother's family

Posted: Updated:
FREEHOLD -

A New Jersey businessman accused of killing his brother, sister-in-law and their two children has pleaded not guilty to felony murder and other charges.

A public defender for Paul Caneiro entered the pleas Monday during a hearing in Freehold. Caneiro had previously been represented by private attorneys who maintained his innocence, but they have withdrawn from the case due to conflicts of interest.

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An indictment unsealed last month charges Caneiro with murder, felony murder, aggravated arson and a weapons offense. He also faces counts of theft, misapplication of entrusted property and hindering his own apprehension.
 
The charges stem from the deaths of Keith Caneiro, his wife, Jennifer, and their two young children. Their bodies were found after a fire broke out at their Colts Neck home Nov. 20.

Keith Caneiro was found on his front lawn, shot five times. The body of Jennifer Caneiro was found between the basement and first floor of their home. She had been shot in the head and stabbed. Their children Sophia and Jesse had been stabbed to death, according to officials.

Officials state that Paul Caneiro set fire to his own Ocean Township home in an attempt to divert attention from himself as a suspect.

Prosecutors say the murders were over missing money at the tech company the Caneiro brothers ran.

Keith and Paul Caneiro jointly owned Square One Inc. and EcoStar Pest Management in Asbury Park.

AP wire services helped contribute to this report.

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