In a new episode of ABC’s 20/20, the strange Dalia Dippolito case is examined, revealing what happens when reality TV and hidden cameras mix with a real-life murder-for-hire plot. Dippolito was convicted of hiring a man to kill her then-husband, Michael Dippolito.
In 2009, authorities secretly recorded Dippolito trying to hire a hitman to kill her husband and then staged a murder scene to make it look like the plot worked. Cameras then caught her reaction to what she believed was her husband’s murder, according to ABC.
Dippolito was sentenced to 16 years in prison in 2017 after being found guilty of soliciting first-degree murder.
Here’s what you should know about Mike Dippolito:
1. Michael Testified that His Ex-Wife Tried to Frame Him
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During the trial, Mike testified that Dalia tried to frame him into getting caught by the police by hiding drugs in his car. She had also allegedly tried to kill him previously by putting poison in his tea.
He said he was suspicious of her after that
“I knew it,” Dippolito told Fox News. “I couldn’t catch her doing anything. But I had my eye on her and I had a good suspicion… I’m not oblivious to what’s going on around me, but who wants to immediately think it’s your girl or your wife? That’s just not a natural reaction… But I was praying it wasn’t her.”
2. He Was “5,000 Percent” Happy With Dalia’s Conviction
During the trial, it came out that Dalia had told an undercover detective who was posing as a hitman that she was “5,000 percent sure” that she wanted her husband dead.
When the conviction came through, her former husband said that he was “5,000 percent” happy with his ex-wife being convicted of trying to hire a hitman to murder him.
After the trial, Michael said that the jury was able to see through “the lies” defense attorneys for Dalia tried to convince them of.
3. He Ran a Telemarketing Scam
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Before meeting Dalia, Michael Dippolito was running a scheme of his own, according to the Broward Palm Beach New Times.
From an apartment in Boca Raton, Dippolito ran a telemarketing business that allegedly preyed on strangers in Ohio, Illinois and California, convincing them to invest in foreign currency options.
At least a dozen customers wired money to his bank account, but the money was never invested in foreign currency. According to court documents, his companies collected more than $200,000 in about 11 months, but customers complained about him, and he was arrested in March 2002.
4. Michael Dippolito Spent Seven Months in Prison
After he was arrested in March 2002 for his telemarketing scam, he pleaded guilty to charges of organized fraud and unlicensed telemarketing.
Dippolito was sentenced to two years in state prison, but he only ended up serving seven months thanks to the jail time he’d already spent awaiting trial.
He is currently on probation until 2032 and has to pay restitution every month to his victims. He also told Boynton Beach police that his wife scammed him out of $191,000 intended to pay the restitution.
5. He Found Love Again After Dalia
In September 2017, Inside Edition reported that Dippolito had found love once again, nearly a decade after everything happened with his ex-wife.
Michael was engaged at the time to a woman named Gloria, who he met at a restaurant. She said at the time that after she learned what had happened to Michael, she felt bad for him.
“I really felt bad for him but my thing is just moving on from there,” she added. “I love him a lot.”