Prosecutors say that over a two-month period, Johnny Borizov, 28, of Willow Springs, talked to Jacob Nodarse, 23, of Countryside, about killing members of the Kramer family in their Darien home.
Borizov entered a not guilty plea Friday as he appeared in court charged with the murders of his ex-girlfriend's parents and younger brother.
Borizov was formally indicted with the crime Tuesday in a 26-count felony indictment. His family, including his mother, father, brother, and sister-in-law, left a DuPage County Courthouse Friday morning with no comment about the hearing.
Both suspects are being held without bond on murder and conspiracy charges for the March 2 slayings of 50-year-old Jeff and 48-year-old Lori Kramer and their youngest child, Michael, 20.
DuPage County prosecutors say Nodarse admitted to committing the murders and accused Borizov of masterminding the attacks to get revenge on Angela, 25, who he was locked in a bitter custody battle with over their infant son. Angela Kramer managed to survive the attack by hiding in a closet and calling 911.
Borizov's attorneys say prosecutors have accused an innocent man.
"We don't even understand where these charges and the indictment come from," said Marc Wolfe, Borizov's attorney. "The indictments fail to state even what person or who he supposedly influenced. I find it remarkable at this point, but that's the way it is."
Borizov's attorneys also made a demand for a speedy trial. Authorities say although there was no money exchanged, Borizov's also been charged with solicitation of murder. Nodarse has not yet been indicted.