LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com)  —  The FBI announced on Friday that a former Norwalk man who was accused in the 2012 rape and murder of a disabled neighbor has been captured in Guatemala.

Luis Fernando Diofron Lemus, 22, was arrested in Guatemala Thursday following a joint investigation among detectives with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department; the FBI’s Fugitive Task Force in Los Angeles, and the FBI’s Transnational Anti-Gang Task Force (TAG) in Guatemala.

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Detectives with the LASD responded to the Norwalk home of Denise Battey, 51, on August 10, 2012, and determined that she had been sexually assaulted and murdered during the commission of a burglary.

Battey was stabbed seven times while tending to her garden.

LASD Detectives identified Diofron Lemus as the suspect and determined that he initially fled to Tijuana.

When detectives determined that the suspect had fled the country, the FBI’s Fugitive Task Force in Los Angeles was asked to assist.

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On December 2, 2013, a provisional arrest warrant for the suspect was issued in Guatemala, where he was believed to be residing at the time. On August 13, 2014, he was charged in the federal criminal complaint with Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution (UFAP).

Diofron Lemus’ specific location in Guatemala was unknown until TAG investigators developed a lead.

The suspect has been transferred to Guatemala City and is being held in the Preventivo Para Los Hombres awaiting extradition.


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