The trial of a former southeast Missouri minister charged with attempted murder has been delayed until January.

The Dexter Daily Statesman reports that 70-year-old Donald Lafferty was originally scheduled for trial this month. In addition to first-degree attempted murder, he is charged with first-degree arson, armed criminal action and financial exploitation of an elderly or disabled person.

Lafferty's attorneys requested the delay.

Prosecutors say Lafferty agreed to pay Brandi and Christopher Hicks $15,000 to set fire to his home in January 2013, and another $5,000 if his wife died in the fire.

The fire badly damaged the home but Mildred Lafferty awoke and escaped. She has since divorced her husband, who now lives in Vermont.

iStockphoto