Archive for Friday, June 20, 2003

Fugitive cosmetics heir returned from Mexico

June 20, 2003


— The FBI put cosmetics heir Andrew Luster aboard a plane Thursday in Mexico and flew him back to California, five months after he was convicted in absentia of drugging and raping three women.

The former fugitive arrived in Los Angeles and was handed over to authorities in Ventura County, where he was found guilty in January and sentenced to 124 years in prison. He was being held in a processing center.

The 39-year-old great-grandson of Hollywood makeup legend Max Factor jumped $1 million bail and vanished just days before the verdict.

On Wednesday, Mexican police arrested him after he scuffled with bounty hunters near a taco stand in the beach resort of Puerto Vallarta.

Prosecutors said between 1996 and 2000 Luster took women to his seaside home outside Los Angeles, gave them the so-called date-rape drug GHB and raped them. Some of the encounters were videotaped.

At the time he was captured, Luster was staying at a $34-a-night hotel beside a police station in Puerto Vallarta and had just ordered tacos at a street stall when the bounty hunters tackled him, authorities said.

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