SAN DIEGO — FBI officials hope that publicity about the abduction and killing in Tijuana of the son of a Mexican singer will help them find the suspected killer, who is wanted in a separate murder-for-hire case on the U.S. side of the border.
U.S. authorities are not investigating the July slaying of Leonardo Martinez Flores, the 21-year-old son of ranchera singer Beatriz Adriana Flores, known as Beatriz Adriana. But they believe a suspect in that case is the same man they are hunting in connection with the abduction and slaying of a San Diego man in 1998.
Beatriz Adriana, who gained fame as a singer and actress in Mexico during the 1970s and early 1980s, will join FBI officials in San Diego today to draw public attention to the killings. The performer lives in seclusion in Southern California, authorities said.
"We don't have a case involving the murder of Beatriz Adriana's son. [But] there's a meeting of interests," said Special Agent Jeff Thurman, an FBI spokesman in San Diego.
The suspect, Humberto Iribe Monroy, 25, is from Tijuana and might cross into the United States, Thurman said. Iribe was last seen in Mexico.
"He's more than likely hiding in Mexico, but there's a chance he's coming back and forth across the border. That's been his pattern in the past," Thurman said.
Thurman said Iribe belongs to a prominent family and is an off-road racing enthusiast.
Iribe has been named by Mexican authorities as a suspect in the kidnapping murders in Tijuana of Martinez and a second man, Aquiles Veljiz Hernandez, 21.
The victims' bodies were found as relatives tried to gather $800,000 reportedly demanded by their captors. Mexican authorities said later that Veljiz appeared to be the target and that Martinez was killed only because he was present. Officials said drug trafficking may have been a factor in the killings.
In April, Iribe was indicted in U.S. District Court in San Diego on charges stemming from the 1998 disappearance of Richard Post, a San Diego private investigator. Iribe allegedly was hired to torture and kill Post by an employer with whom Post had a romantic relationship. The woman, Kimberly Bailey, was told by an employee that Post was stealing from her alternative therapy firm and seeing another woman, authorities say.
Post was lured to Tijuana on Aug. 20, 1998, and never seen again, authorities said. Prosecutors have said Post was tortured with pliers for five days before being killed. But the defense contends that Post is alive and hiding after stealing more than $1 million from the business, Bio-Solutions Inc.
Bailey, who also goes by the name Janet Fleming, awaits trial in San Diego on federal charges of conspiring to murder on foreign soil. An employee, John Krueger, also is in custody facing similar charges.
The FBI said Iribe may be armed and should be considered dangerous.