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Tuesday, July 18, 2006

The strange case of Suzane von Richtofen

The strange case of Suzane von Richtofen.
this is one of the stories that has all of brasil talking.. it has sex, murder, and money.. its had twists and turns.. at one point suzanne was interviewed for a national tv show, and during a commercial break, the cameras caught her lawyers coaching her to cry as she spoke of the murder.. the tv here has round the clock coverage, just like the oj trial..
Man admits killing girlfriend's parents
By STAN LEHMAN, Associated Press Writer Mon Jul 17, 10:03 PM ET
SAO PAULO, Brazil - The former lover of a wealthy young woman testified Monday that he killed her parents because they opposed their affair, which crossed Brazil's rigid class lines.
Daniel Cravinhos, 25, said he beat Manfred and Marisa von Richtofen to death with an iron bar as they slept at home in a wealthy district of Sao Paulo because the couple's daughter, Suzane von Richtofen, persuaded him to do it.
Cravinhos said 22-year-old Richtofen told him she was sexually abused by her father and beaten by her mother.
"She said she hated them and wanted to see them dead," he said as the trial opened Monday. "I was shocked."
Cravinhos and his older brother Christian are accused of the murder, but the younger brother said he killed the couple himself at his lover's behest.
Manfred von Richtofen, 49, was an engineer and the great nephew of the World War I German ace known as the Red Baron. His wife was a psychologist. The couple disapproved of their daughter's relationship with Cravinhos, who is from a lower middle-class family, the daughter's lawyers have said.
Cravinhos said the father had threatened to disinherit Richtofen from his estate, worth a reported $954,000, if she did not end their relationship.
Cravinhos said Richtofen persuaded him to test a gun in her parents' bedroom three months before the murder to see if it made too much noise, but then discarded the idea of shooting them.
He said Richtofen let the brothers into the house on the night of Oct. 30, 2002. Armed with iron bars, they sneaked to the parents' bedroom, but his brother "froze," he said.
Daniel Cravinhos testified he then hit each parent "four to six" times in the head and covered their faces with black plastic bags so Richtofen's younger brother, Andreas — who was out at an Internet cafe — would not see them.
Christian Cravinhos said on the day of the crime, the couple came to his house looking "extremely agitated and nervous."
"Both said they were going to kill Suzane's parents," he told prosecutors.
Prosecutors said they would seek the maximum sentence of 60 years in prison for Richtofen and the two brothers — 30 years for each killing.
Richtofen's attorneys have said Cravinho threatened to leave her if she did not get rid of her parents.
Police say the Cravinho brothers took some $7,000 from the house, and investigators were led to the older brother when he purchased a new motorcycle the day after the murder, paying for it with 36 $100 bills.

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