Closing arguments underway in Hillsborough real estate heiress murder trial
REDWOOD CITY, Calif. - A Bay Area real estate heiress and her boyfriend killed the father of the woman's two young children because she was frustrated over the man's continual requests for money, a prosecutor in the couple's murder trial said Wednesday during the start of closing arugments.
Tiffany Li and her boyfriend Kaveh Bayat are charged with killing Keith Green, the 27-year-old father of her two children, in May 2016. Prosecutors allege that Li lured Green to her Hillsborough mansion and Bayat forced a gun into Green’s mouth, breaking a tooth, and pulled the trigger.
Prosecutors say the couple then drove the body to the Burlingame apartment of their bodyguard, Oliver Adella. Prosecutors allege Adella followed Li's orders and dumped Green's body in Sonoma County. Adella himself told prosecutors the couple had paid him thousands of dollars to "take out the trash."
Keith Green seen here in this undated photo before his death in May of 2016.
Li's family in China has made a fortune in real estate construction and San Mateo County Deputy District Attorney Bryan Abanto said Wednesday that Green was constantly requesting money, which frustated Li.
Prosecutors have also alleged that Li and Bayat killed Green because she feared losing custody of her two children Prosecutors claim Bayat’s motive was that he didn’t want Green to interfere with his relationship with Li.
Neither Li nor Bayat took the stand during the month-long trial.
Tiffany Li and Kaveh Bayat
During the prosecutions closing arguments Wednesday, both sat expressionless taking notes.
Li’s defense attorney, Geoffrey Carr declined comment on the prosecutions' claims Wednesday, saying only that much of what was said can be easily disproven.
As for Adella, he was originally charged with murder, but struck a plea deal to testify during the trial as a prosecution witness. The plea deal was renoved last month after authorities said he tried to contact a defense witness. This delayed the start of the trial.
San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said Adella is due in court next month so a judge can decide whether he, in fact, violated the terms of his plea deal.
Wagstaffe said there likely won’t be any answers in Adella’s case until next year.