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SAN DIEGO (AP) - A San Diego judge has ordered the frontman of the Grammy-winning band As I Lay Dying to stand trial on charges he tried to hire someone to kill his estranged wife.

San Diego Superior Court Judge Robert Kearney handed down his decision Monday in the case against Timothy Lambesis after several hours of testimony by witnesses for the prosecution, including an undercover officer who posed as a hitman.

Lambesis will be arraigned on the charges Oct. 22, when the date for his trial will be set.

Undercover officer Howard Bradley testified that Lambesis met him believing he was a hitman and told him he wanted his wife, Meggan Lambesis, dead. Bradley says Lambesis gave him his wife's name, photo and address, along with $1,000 cash.

Lambesis has pleaded not guilty to solicitation for murder.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP's earlier story is below.

The frontman for the Grammy-winning band As I Lay Dying is facing a court hearing to determine whether he will stand trial on charges he tried to hire someone to kill his estranged wife.

The prosecution will argue its case against Timothy Lambesis during a preliminary hearing Monday in San Diego Superior Court in Vista.

Prosecutors say Lambesis paid $1,000 to a detective posing as a hit man. Investigators say the undercover operation was staged after the singer told a man at his gym on April 23 and again the next day that he wanted his wife killed, complaining that she was making it difficult for him to see their three adopted children and impossible to complete their divorce.

Lambesis has pleaded not guilty to solicitation for murder.

Prosecutors say the singer was on tour in August when he emailed his wife, Meggan Lambesis, telling her he didn't love her and wanted to end the relationship. Meggan Lambesis, according to prosecutors, later learned her husband was having an affair.

They say Lambesis gave the undercover agent a photograph of his wife, her address, security gate code and dates he would be with his children to give him an alibi.

Defense attorney, Thomas Warwick, has said his client had been using steroids for body building and they'd had a devastating effect on his mind. His lawyer did not return calls seeking comment before the hearing.

The singer has been out on $2 million bail since May. He was ordered to wear a GPS monitor and to stay away from Meggan Lambesis and their three children, who were adopted from Ethiopia.

As I Lay Dying formed in San Diego in 2000 and has released six albums, including 2007's "An Ocean Between Us," which reached No. 8 on Billboard's charts. A single from the album, "Nothing Left," was nominated for a Grammy for top metal performance.

The band plays in an aggressive style that features lightning-speed metal guitar riffs. The group's philosophical lyrics have attracted a following of Christian rock fans.

If convicted, Lambesis could face up to nine years in prison.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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