Husband sues rival who plotted his death 'Mental anguish' and indignities cited

November 03, 1993|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,Staff Writer

When Louis A. Lolli learned that his wife and her longtime lover had conspired to have him killed and crushed in the trunk of his car, he turned into a shell of his outgoing self.

"He wouldn't eat, he wouldn't sleep -- he just stood up all hours of the night. . . . He cried all the time, too," his mother, Ann Lolli, told a Baltimore County jury yesterday.

Luckily for Mr. Lolli, the hit man the conspirators hired for the job turned out to be an undercover state trooper. Now Mr. Lolli is in Circuit Court asking money damages for the "severe mental anguish," medical problems and other indignities he says were inflicted on him.

The defendant in the suit, Manuel S. Fram, 60, and the victim's wife, Nancy A. Lolli, 49, both were convicted of criminal charges last year in Howard County. Fram served eight months in jail for solicitation of murder, then suffered two heart attacks and was placed on five months of home detention. Mrs. Lolli received a suspended sentence for conspiracy.

Yesterday, Mr. Lolli's family described how the news of the plot affected him, and them.

"The worst of it all was how he was supposed to die, being crushed in a car," the victim's mother sobbed. "My beautiful, handsome son, to be crushed in a car. When I think about that I get chills down my back. . . . No Catholic burial -- nothing."

For his part, Fram, who owns a Pikesville tombstone business, testified that he paid a hit man $10,000 to kill Mr. Lolli, stuff him in the trunk of his car and have the vehicle crushed, not because he loved Mrs. Lolli, but because he "felt sorry for her." Fram didn't know that he had enlisted an undercover state trooper until his arrest, after the second payment at a Jessup motel.

Just before trial began Monday, Mr. Lolli, 56, a CSX employee who lives in Randallstown, dropped his wife from the suit.

Mrs. Lolli has denied any knowledge of the murder plot but agreed to a plea-bargain on the criminal charges.

"Nancy and Lou Lolli really decided to put their civil differences behind them for the sake of their family," said Mrs. Lolli's attorney, Kathleen Birrane.

"They didn't think it would be productive to turn it into a media circus."

Mr. Fram, of the 6200 block of Park Heights Ave., testified that he met Mrs. Lolli in 1970 when she came to work as a secretary at the Fram Monument Co.

An affair began about two years later and continued until the plot unraveled -- although he said their last year consisted largely of arguments over her insistence that he help her kill Mr. Lolli.

She told him her husband beat her, sometimes displaying her bruises, Mr. Fram said.

By late 1990, Mr. Fram said, he had agreed to find a hit man, and went through a man named "Doc," who turned out to be a police informant. Using the code "Marble Tombstone," he met with the supposed hit man and made two $5,000 payments.

Mrs. Lolli provided a photograph and a typed sheet of information, he said, including a description of her husband and his car, and when and where he parked for the subway or went bowling.

After Mr. Fram was arrested in January 1991, he agreed to wear a body wire to try to record Mrs. Lolli's involvement. He later learned she was seeing another man, he said.

Neither of them talked of divorce, he said -- with a tearful tribute to his own forgiving wife.

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