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Marin Independent Journal, Alan Dep, File, Associated Press
FILE - In this April 13, 2011 file photo, Joseph Naso appears in Marin County Superior Court during his arraignment on murder charges in San Rafael, Calif. Prosecutors were expected to begin presenting their case Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2012 against Joseph Naso, a 78-year-old photographer charged with killing four Northern California women with matching initials in the 1970s and 1990s.

SAN RAFAEL, Calif. — A former photographer accused of killing four Northern California women with matching initials in the 1970s and 1990s defended disturbing photos of women found in his Nevada home, saying they were created for magazines that feature such work.

The comments by 78-year-old Joseph Naso came during a preliminary hearing Tuesday in his murder trial. Naso has pleaded not guilty to the murders and is representing himself in what will likely be a death penalty case.

Probation officer Roger Jacobs found the photographs in a search of Naso's Reno home. He testified the pictures showed nude women who appeared dead or unconscious and were posed in "unnatural positions."

But Naso said the photographs were created for magazines . He said they proved only that he enjoyed looking at posed or "fabricated" photos of women who were acting dead or asleep.