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  1. #1
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    KS - Twisted Perez-Castro cult: multiple deaths, insurance scams, child rape, 2012

    A bizarre tale shaping up here, out of the Wichita/Valley Center KS area but with tentacles in other states:

    Woman’s death now considered homicide (Wichita Eagle)
    WICHITA — Eight years after an investigation found that a 26-year-old Valley Center woman died accidentally in a swimming pool, her death has been reclassified as a homicide, and a man is facing charges in her death.

    An arrest warrant has been issued for Daniel U. Perez, 52. The warrant says that he is charged with first-degree, premeditated murder and sexual exploitation of a child.
    ---
    [Patricia Hughes's parents] contended that Hughes’ death was one of about a dozen deaths that had something in common: The people who died had been associated with Perez, the man now charged in her death, or two other people, court documents say. The documents also say that Perez used an alias of Lou Castro.

    “There is a pattern that members of a group associated with the person using the name of Lou Castro have followed of insuring members of the group and then living off the proceeds of the life insurance policies when one of them dies,” the grandparents’ attorney said in a July 2010 document in the guardianship case.
    ---
    Fugitive charged with murder, rape, child sexual exploitation; bond set at $2.1M (Kansas City Star)
    ---
    Prosecutors charged Perez with first-degree murder in the death of Patricia Hughes, 26, of Valley Center, who died in 2003. She lived in one of three houses that neighbors referred to as a compound, in the 9500 block of North Oliver.

    The new charges against Perez, who became a fugitive after being convicted of sex crimes with a child in Texas in the 1990s, include 36 counts. Among the charges: sexual exploitation of an 8-year-old; rape of a 10-year-old; aggravated criminal sodomy against a 10-year-old. Most of the sex crimes involved two victims and occurred from 2002 to 2009 in Sedgwick County, court documents say.

    One of the charges alleges a rape “when consent was obtained through a knowing misrepresentation made by Daniel U. Perez that the sexual intercourse was a medically or therapeutically necessary procedure.”
    ---
    Man charged with 2003 murder, sex crimes and falsifying documents (kansascw.com)
    ---
    "There were women particularly who were having some difficulty at that time in their life and he was helping them," said [Wichita attorney Martin] Bauer.

    One of those women was Patricia Hughes. She became part of Castro's group in the late 90s. She eventually married Brian Hughes and had a daughter.

    • In February 2001, Patricia collected a $700,000 dollar life insurance policy when her friend Mona Griffith (also a member of Castro's group) died in a plane crash.
    • In June 2003, Patricia died while reportedly trying to rescue her 2-year-old daughter from a pool on the property. Her husband, Brian Hughes, collected $1.2 million in insurance money.
    • In March 2006, Brian Hughes had an accident [the jacked-up vehicle fell and killed him] while working on his brother's truck in South Dakota. Since he's no longer married, a $500,000 insurance check is cashed by a friend named Kara Lemier, a friend who is also part of the group.
    • In keeping with Brian Hughes' wishes, guardianship of his daughter went to another group member named Jennifer Hutson. Hutson died in September 2008 after a head-on collision with a gravel truck.
    ---
    much more of this tale at links above

    A picture of Daniel Perez/Lou Castro from Daily Mail.
    Last edited by wfgodot; 01-21-2012 at 06:03 PM.

  2. #2
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    Wow, what a grand scheme, and this "One of the charges alleges a rape “when consent was obtained through a knowing misrepresentation made by Daniel U. Perez that the sexual intercourse was a medically or therapeutically necessary procedure.”
    ---

    Pure evil
    England's dancing days are done...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by badhorsie View Post
    Wow, what a grand scheme, and this "One of the charges alleges a rape “when consent was obtained through a knowing misrepresentation made by Daniel U. Perez that the sexual intercourse was a medically or therapeutically necessary procedure.”
    ---

    Pure evil
    Yeah, when I was reading through the articles I saw that and had to blink and read it twice to make sure I read what I thought I did.

    Definitely a WTH? moment.

  4. #4
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    http://www.kake.com/news/headlines/M...ction=comments

    some local comments are interesting and the story says it was Perez's sister (Mona) that died in the plane crash, her 12 yo daughter, and Mona's boyfriend.

    And then there is this

    http://www.kake.com/news/headlines/M...137799488.html

    Murder Suspect Donated Money For Vehicle To Kechi P.D.

  5. #5
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    This is one of those cases that threatens to get bigger and weirder and make a good subject for a book one day.

  6. #6
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    latest update with more background

    http://www.kansas.com/2012/02/04/220...questions.html

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by fhc View Post
    In terms of holding one's attention, it's hard to beat an introductory paragraph like this one:
    Was a 2001 plane crash that killed Mona Griffith, her boyfriend and her 12-year-old daughter a tragic accident, nothing more?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by wfgodot View Post
    In terms of holding one's attention, it's hard to beat an introductory paragraph like this one:
    Did you catch this one?

    After the crash, an obituary listed “Lou Castro” – the alias Perez used – as being a brother of Griffith, even though Perez was not a relative, the relative said. It’s not clear how “Lou Castro” came to be listed as a surviving brother.

    Read more here: http://www.kansas.com/2012/02/04/220...#storylink=cpy

    so he wasn't her brother.

  9. #9
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    Wonder who the other 10 or so people are that died, that aren't listed in any of these articles?

    interesting,
    fran

    PS>..I believe there MAY be some truth in what he told others about a wife who died and he'd received a large insurance payment. I think they need to keep digging!

  10. #10
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    Here's a Wichita Eagle article from 28 January with a breakdown of Castro/Perez's trail through various states and cities -
    North and South Dakota, Texas, Kansas City, Valley Center:

    How a fugitive’s trail of alleged crimes went through Valley Center


  11. #11
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    Perez's prelimanary hearing




    http://www.kansas.com/2012/05/29/235...y-hearing.html

    His adult daughter said she does not believe he would have murdered the woman that hid him from the child sex abuse charges. He had also instructed a child to lie about Hughes's death.

  12. #12
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    One of the odder stories we've seen. Thanks Filly for finding that info.

  13. #13
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    What an unbelievably horrific case. How many victims do you suppose there were??
    Any man's death diminishes me,
    Because I am involved in mankind,
    Therefore, send not to know, for whom the bell tolls;
    It tolls for thee.
    ~John Dunne


    #TeamCivilization

  14. #14
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    http://www.kansas.com/news/local/cri...le8909291.html

    Daniel U. Perez heads to trial in Sedgwick County Court on 38 criminal charges, including first-degree premeditated murder in Hughes’ death.

    The charges against the 55-year-old Perez – which also include rape, sodomy, sexual exploitation of a child, aggravated assault, criminal threat and directing that false information be put on life insurance and car credit applications – are associated with a communal lifestyle he led in Kansas with a group known as “the family.”

    Perez has pleaded not guilty to the charges. Jury selection in the case is scheduled to begin Monday.

  15. #15
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    http://www.columbiamissourian.com/a/...h-he-foretold/

    The woman, who was 12 years old at the time, testified during a pretrial hearing that right before she died, Hughes kissed her 2-year-old daughter goodbye and reassured another child that she would return from the dead.

    The woman... said Hughes helped unfurl the pool vacuum to make her death look accidental, and that Perez and Hughes then told her to wait in a nearby shop office with Hughes' daughter. She said she heard a splash and a scream, and that she trembled while she was holding the toddler.

    The woman said Perez's forearms were wet and he was out of breath when he came into the office, and that he told her to wait 20 minutes before going to the pool and getting into it with the toddler. She said he told her to then call the police and to tell investigators that Hughes fell and hit her head while trying to rescue her daughter.

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