Food Network Star Plea Bargain Rumblings

5/26/2010 5:00 AM PDT

Food Network Star -- Plea Bargain Rumblings

Sources tell TMZ the L.A. County District Attorney's Office is open to plea bargaining the attempted murder case against former Food Network host Juan-Carlos Cruz.

Law enforcement sources tell us the D.A. and the cops are well aware of the Shakespearean drama between Juan-Carlos and his wife, Jennifer Campbell. TMZ broke the story that Campbell has been despondent for years over the couple's inability to have kids -- and she told members of her church and others she wanted to end her life, but her religion views suicide as a mortal sin.

Sources say Juan-Carlos was making a feeble attempt to end his wife's life and then kill himself, by trying to hire 3 homeless men to murder his wife. We're told the cops and prosecutors believe this was Cruz's MO.

We're told because of the circumstances ... in a plea bargain the D.A. would be inclined to dismiss the attempted murder charge.  In return, we're told, the D.A. would be open to a guilty or no contest plea to solicitation to commit murder, which carries a 3 to 9-year sentence.

If Cruz got the low end of the sentence, with good behavior he would have to serve around a year and a half ... not a bad resolution.