Suspect Wanted for a Local Murder is Arrested in Mexico

April 21, 2004

Los Angeles: The suspect wanted for the 1999 Christmas Day murder in the "Candy Cane Lane" area of Woodland Hills has been arrested in Mexico.
On April 18, 2004, Mexican Federal Police located and arrested 36-year-old Carlos Alvaro Beltrani Merino in Vera Cruz, Mexico and booked him for the murder of Francisco Javiar Hernandez. Hernandez was shot and killed at the intersection of Lubao Avenue and Calvert Street at 9:45 p.m., on Christmas Day, 1999, following a dispute. The shooting occurred in front of the victim’s wife and two-year-old son and was witnessed by hundreds of people who were in the area viewing the Christmas light displays.
In the weeks following the murder, West Valley Homicide detectives identified the suspect as Carlos Alvaro Beltrani Merino and obtained a warrant for his arrest. The investigation revealed that Merino fled to Mexico and the case was presented to the Mexican Authorities, who subsequently issued an arrest warrant in that country for Merino’s arrest.
Merino is being held without bail and he will be charged and tried in Mexico for the murder.
This news release was prepared by Public Information Officer Eduardo Funes, Media Relations Section, at 213 485-3586.