ONSLOW COUNTY -- Fugitive Marine Cpl. Cesar Laurean has been indicted on first-degree murder charges in the death of 20-year-old Lance Cpl. Maria Lauterbach -- but prosecutors say they reluctantly agreed not seek the death penalty if he is arrested in Mexico. Onslow County District Attorney Dewey Hudson said, "I was informed that Mexico would not arrest or allow extradition of Mr. Laurean to the US unless they were assured that they death penalty would not be imposed." Just before a national manhunt was launched to capture him Laurean took a bus from Raleigh-Durham and headed for Houston, Texas. From Houston, sources say Laurean rode a bus to central Mexico. FBI special agent Richard Kolko said, "At this point there are many leads pointing to him being in Mexico." In fact, Laurean's cousin says he saw the fugitive Marine at this liquor store in Guadalajara last week. Lauterbach had once accused Laurean of rape. She was pregnant when she went missing in mid-December. Her body later found buried behind Laurean's home. According to the indictment Laurean forced her to take out money from her bank account December 14 -- the same day authorities believe he killed her. Because Lauterbach's child had not been born at the time of her death prosecutors can only charge Laurean with one count of murder. He's also charged with armed robbery.
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