Former Marine accused of killing girlfriend in Panama
A former U.S. Marine accused of killing and dismembering his girlfriend appeared in federal court Monday, but no trial date has yet been set for the lengthy and complex international case.
Brian Karl Brimager, 37, has pleaded not guilty to killing Yvonne Baldelli, 42, in 2011 while the two were living in Panama. Monday’s hour-long hearing involved evidence to be presented at trial.
Baldelli’s remains were found in the jungle almost two years after her disappearance. Brimager has been in custody, without bail, since 2013 but issues of extradition have slowed the case.
San Diego federal prosecutors had to ask permission from the Department of Justice to seek an indictment of Brimager on a little-used law involving a murder in a foreign land.
The next court date is set for Aug. 5, probably to hear prosecutors and defense attorneys argue over motions.
Before moving to Panama, Brimager had lived in Vista, Baldelli in Orange and Los Angeles counties.
Brimager and Baldelli had moved to Isla Carenero, Panama, in 2011, but their relationship was marked by domestic violence, according to the federal indictment.
Brimager killed Baldelli in November 2011, dismembered her body and disposed of the body parts in the jungle, according to the indictment.
Within hours of killing Baldelli, prosecutors say, Brimager used her computer to do searches for information about “washing mattress” and “washing mattress blood stain.”
While living with Baldelli, Brimager was emailing a woman in the United States with whom he had had a child, saying that he planned to return so the two could live together, according to prosecutors.
Start your day right
Sign up for Essential California for news, features and recommendations from the L.A. Times and beyond in your inbox six days a week.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.