INDIO (CBSLA.com) — A suspect wanted for the April 2004 murder of a man in Coachella was arrested in Mexico and returned to Riverside County to face justice.
Walter Cuevas Gastelum, 29, is charged with one count of murder in the death of Manuel Ley.
The victim was found inside a residence on Van Buren Street in Coachella on April 12, 2004.
Ley was killed with a shotgun following an alleged argument with the suspect.
Officials said Gastelum fled the country immediately following the murder and has been on the lam ever since.
Gastelum was apprehended in Sonora, Mexico last June.
Authorities said Gastelum fought extradition for months. On December 30, 2013 Mexico agreed to send him back to the United States.
Gastelum was returned to the United States Friday morning. Members of a Fugitive Task Force picked Gastelum up in Mexico City and accompanied him to LAX.
The suspect was transferred to Indio and interviewed before being booked.
Gastelum reportedly told an aunt that he killed a man on his uncle’s ranch.
There was no information about Gastelum’s arraignment.