Canada

Bungling of Ianiero murder case tied to Mexican tourist trade: lawyer

Fear of jeopardizing Mexico's tourist trade might have been behind the refusal of authorities and a hotel there to consider a homegrown suspect in the 2006 killings of a Canadian couple vacationing in Cancun, their family's lawyer said Friday.
Nancy and Domenic Ianiero of Woodbridge, Ont., were found slain in their room at a resort near Cancun in February 2006. ((CBC))

Fear of jeopardizing Mexico's tourist trade might have been behind the refusal of authorities and a hotel there to consider a homegrown suspect in the 2006 killings of a Canadian couple vacationing in Cancun, their family's lawyer said Friday.

"I think it was the Mexican authorities and the hotel in Cancun that refused to admit that," Edward Greenspan told CBC in a Toronto interview.

"They wanted it to be Canadians who had killed Canadians so that somehow that wouldn't adversely affect the tourist trade. That is what they did. That is why they blamed two Canadian women."

Domenic Ianiero, 59, and wife Nancy, 55, of Woodbridge, Ont., were found in their room at the Barcelo Maya resort near Playa del Carmen on Feb. 20, 2006, with their throats slashed. The couple, along with more than a dozen other family members, were in Mexico for their daughter's wedding.

On Thursday, a Mexican judge issued an arrest warrant for Blas Delgado Fajardo, a hotel security guard, a step that cleared two Thunder Bay, Ont., women — Kimberly Kim and Cheryl Everall — of the killings.

The Ianieros never believed the women were guilty and hope this is a step in the right direction, said Greenspan, who also represents the two women.

"They're happy for the two women in Thunder Bay that justice was finally done for them. They want justice done for their own family," he said

Toronto lawyer Edward Greenspan says Mexican authorities bungled the Ianiero murder case. ((CBC))

"All of the evidence pointed away from [Kim and Everall]. It seemed ridiculous that they could possibly be involved. They didn't know the Ianieros. They were clearly in the wrong place at the wrong time."

Delgado reportedly befriended the couple during their stay at the resort, giving them a lift in a golf cart and at one point massaging Domenic Ianiero's foot. Delgado's conduct at the resort was viewed as "suspicious" and he fled the day after the murders, Greenspan said.

"The fact is that the man that we believe did it ran away from the hotel, from that area, and that is called in law 'consciousness of guilt,' and then there is other evidence that ties him to the room and to other people that saw him that night dressed in black, which was an odd colour to be wearing at that place at that time."

Mexican authorities have been criticized for their handling of the case and for the bizarre twists in their statements to the media.

Kimberly Kim and Cheryl Everall were cleared of the Ianiero murders. ((CBC))

"Everything that could be done wrong was done wrong," said Greenspan, including the hotel having two maids immediately mop up the room where the couple's bodies were found, thereby destroying any forensic evidence.

Greenspan blasted Bello Melchor Rodriguez, attorney general for the Mexican state of Quintana Roo, for his "history of numerous public lies" to reporters over whether there was a Canadian link to the slayings.