Robert Durst, the infamous New York real estate heir, will be extradited to Los Angeles to face murder charges, CBS News Los Angeles reports.
— Chicago Tribune (@chicagotribune) December 23, 2015
The charges claim that Durst killed his former friend and spokeswoman, Susan Berman, to prevent her from getting involved in an investigation into the disappearance of his wife. Robert Durst and his attorney agreed to the extradition.
According to CBS, Durst and his legal team filed an agreement with the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office. It orders Durst to be extradited from Louisiana to Los Angeles no later than August 18, 2016. Court documents indicate that Durst made a deal with prosecutors in New Orleans on a federal weapons charge that had kept him in prison in Louisiana since March.
Richard DeGuerin, one of Durst’s attorneys, said via a statement on Tuesday that the extradition was part of their “effort to have Robert Durst face and defeat the California murder charge as soon as possible.” In October, DeGuerin, stated that Robert Durst was ready for the trial in California. “He is ready for the fight,” DeGuerin told People Magazine.
“He has come to realize that this is finally his opportunity to clear his name – at trial, with fair rules, in a court that will require hard evidence.” Robert Durst is a member of the family that runs 1 World Trade Center in New York. He was featured earlier this year in The Jinx, an HBO documentary series about him and his case. Susan Berman was shot dead at her home in Beverly Hills in December 2000.
Investigators had been planning to meet with her to discuss the 1982 disappearance of Durst’s first wife, Kathleen McCormack Durst. Preosecutors claim that Durst “lay in wait” and attacked Berman in her home. She had been his friend for many years.
For years, Durst insisted that he had nothing to do with Berman’s murder or his first wife’s disappearance. However, as CNN reports, a clip from the HBO documentary seemed to prove otherwise. At one point, Durst unknowingly mutters some pretty incriminating comments while his mic is still on.
“What the hell did I do?” Durst says from a bathroom. “Killed them all, of course.”
During the documentary, a handwriting comparison between an anonymous note that was sent to the police in December 2000 informing them about the location of Berman’s body and another one sent by Durst seemed to prove that the letters were written by the same person. The “cadaver letter,” as it was called, even had the same misspelling of “Beverley Hills Police.”
— Entertainment Weekly (@EW) December 16, 2015
Many view this as evidence that Durst is guilty of the crimes he is accused of. However his lawyer, Dick DeGuerin, disagrees, saying that while it made for an entertaining TV show, The Jinx does not offer any evidence that can be upheld in a court of law.
This isn’t the first time Robert Durst’s name has been connected to a murder. In 2003, Durst admitted to murdering and dismembering his neighbor. He was acquitted after he claimed that he acted in self-defense.
He’s also facing legal challenges in the civil court as well. Earlier this month, the family of Kathleen McCormack Durst filed a $100 million lawsuit claiming that Robert Durst violated their “right of sepulcher” in that Durst denied the family its right to choose how they wanted to bury their deceased loved one, People Magazine reports
The upcoming Durst trial will more than likely be one of the most high profile legal battles in modern memory especially since the eccentric real estate heir has evaded trial for so long.
“We look forward to working with our district attorney to achieve some level of justice from Mr. Durst,” Los Angeles police Chief Charlie Beck said Tuesday, according to the Los Angeles Times.
[Photo via Youtube Screen Shot/ HBO]