Defendant may walk, says local paper
*Updated Aug. 10, 2013* - No exit for Survivor producer Bruce Beresford-Redman
Cancún, Quintana Roo -
Bruce Beresford-Redman, a former associate producer of the popular U.S. television series Survivor, is on trial in a district court here for first degree murder. But a local news service monitoring the case reports the state's prosecution may be in serious jeopardy due to clumsy mistakes by prosecutors, and predicts the judge will be forced to free him. "He's got one foot out of jail," it wrote today.
In November 2010 Bruce Beresford-Redman was charged with murdering his wife, Mónica Burgos, while the two were on vacation here in April of the same year. A local judge conducted a preliminary hearing in February 2012 and found sufficient evidence to hold the ex-producer for a full trial (Former producer of Survivor bound over for trial in Cancún murder). Beresford-Redman later tried to short circuit the trial by legal maneuvering, but was unsuccessful (No release for Bruce Beresford-Redman).
Prosecutors allege that Beresford-Redman killed Burgos during a heated argument. Her body was found in a drainage lagoon near the Moon Palace resort after he reported to authorities that she was missing. Both the cause and time of her death are hotly disputed by the defense. Prosecutors allege that an ongoing affair with another woman was one of Beresford-Redman's motives.
After the discovery of his wife's body Cancún police told Beresford-Redman that he was a suspect in the case, and instructed him not to leave the city. He did so anyway, fleeing to Los Angeles. He was arrested there in late 2010 on an international warrant, and waged a long but unsuccessful fight to avoid extradition to Mexico. Beresford-Redman was returned to Cancún in chains in early 2012.
The Q.R. press reports the prosecution's case has been "plagued with irregularities" from the outset, including the "disappearance" of virtually all the evidence seized by forensic investigators at the scene where Burgos' body was discovered, and in the couple's hotel room. For reasons unknown, a former director of state forensic services apparently ordered the destruction of clothing, hair and blood stain samples. Compounding those errors, the original crime reconstruction specialist - who was to have offered expert opinion on how and where the homicide occurred - was replaced by another technician who only recently entered the case. The trial judge refused to admit that expert's testimony, leaving the state's case in shambles. Dismissal of the murder charge, reports the paper, may be inevitable.
The Brazil born Burgos was 43 at the time of her death. Prosecution evidence shows she suffered a violent blow to the head which caused her to lose consciousness immediately. Burgos died from a cerebral hemorrhage and asphyxia, according to medical evidence presented at the trial.
Beresford-Redman and Burgos had two children together.
Aug. 10, 2013:
Confirman formal prisión a Bruce Beresford
Confirman formal prisión a ex productor de survivor en Quintana Roo
Apr. 19 - Mexican Supreme Court orders Canadian Cynthia Vanier released, on legal technicalities
Feb. 13 - Mexico moves towards greater recognition of criminal defendants' legal rights
Jan. 23 - Mexico's Supreme Court orders Florence Cassez freed
Jan. 23 - Opinion: No justice for Mexicans in Florence Cassez ruling