REDWOOD CITY, Calif. — A former Billionaire Boys Club member, charged with the bungled kidnaping death of his wealthy Iranian father, testified Monday that he had nothing to do with the abduction.
Reza Eslaminia, 26, along with three other BBC members, including alleged mastermind Joe Hunt, are charged with murder, conspiracy and kidnaping in the death of 56-year-old Hedayat Eslaminia, who disappeared from his Northern California condominium in 1984. The elder Eslaminia, a former member of the Iranian Parliament and close associate of the Shah of Iran, fled to America in 1978 following the rise to power of the Ayatollah Khomeini.
Prosecutors say Eslaminia was being taken to a rented Beverly Hills mansion where he would be forced--by torture if necessary--to invest in the foundering BBC. But the younger Eslaminia told a San Mateo County Superior Court jury he believed that BBC leader Joe Hunt was acting as family peacemaker the day his estranged father disappeared.
"I thought if there was anyone who could do it, it was Joe Hunt," Eslaminia said. "Joe had a way about him. He really made you feel comfortable."