Shortly after a Maricopa County Superior Court jury found Michael Marin guilty of burning down his own Biltmore Estates mansion, the former Wall Street trader was caught on camera appearing to swallow an unknown substance. Within minutes, the 53-year-old began to convulse, and ultimately collapsed.
He was later pronounced dead.
A spokesman for the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office said authorities were "leaning towards" declaring Marin's death a suicide, but were awaiting the results of a toxicology report.
"We're going to look at everything he had on him just because it looks like he's putting something in his mouth we don't know really what he did prior to that," said the spokesman. "He could do that to make us think he was taking something and he wasn't and he did something else."
Marin was convicted of setting fire to his house in July 2009 after he lost nearly all of his wealth and was unable to pay his monthly mortgage. A charity auction Marin organized as a last ditch effort was shut down by police. Prosecutors claim it was then that Marin decided to set his house on fire to collect 650,000 dollars worth of insurance.
Investigators linked Marin to the fire after finding strategically placed boxes of flammable debris inside the house. Marin was convicted of the crime yesterday, and faced 16 years behind bars.