Oak Park woman convicted of killing mother, stuffing body in suitcase arrested at O’Hare


CHICAGO (WLS) — Oak Park native Heather Mack was arrested upon her return to the Chicago space Wednesday after being launched from an Indonesian jail, the place she served time for serving to to kill her mom, stuffing the physique in a suitcase.

Mack, 26, was launched from jail on Friday after serving seven years and two months of a 10-year sentence. Her then-boyfriend, who was additionally convicted within the killing, was sentenced to 18 years and stays in jail.

She was taken into custody once more as quickly as she landed.

Mack initially deliberate to go to Los Angeles along with her 6-year-old daughter Stella earlier than returning to Chicago, however the FBI advised her she would as a substitute must return on to Chicago.

Mack and her earlier boyfriend Tommy Schaefer now face federal expenses of conspiracy to commit homicide and obstruction of justice.

In the federal indictment unsealed Wednesday, prosecutors allege Mack and Schaefer deliberate the homicide whereas nonetheless within the U.S. earlier than finishing up the plot in Bali.

Mack will stay in federal custody till not less than subsequent Wednesday after showing in a Chicago courtroom in the present day.

Speaking to the I-Team’s Chuck Goudie, U.S. Attorney John Lausch stated the 2017 indictment remained sealed till her return to Chicago Wednesday.

“It’s a flat out witch hunt,” stated Mack’s lawyer Brian Claypool. “The U.S. attorneys are indicting Heather Mack for a crime that she was already prosecuted for in Indonesia.”

But is it? Convicted of serving to to kill her mom whereas touring along with her in Bali, the crimes she and Schaefer are actually accused of occurred, not less than partially, whereas nonetheless within the United States.

“That’s what gives the government the jurisdiction to bring these charges and because there’s no double jeopardy bar they can do it,” stated ABC7 Legal Analyst Gil Soffer.

RELATED: Heather Mack launched from Bali jail after homicide of mom Sheila von Wiese-Mack in 2014

Von Wiese-Mack’s household thanked the FBI for his or her work Wednesday, saying in an announcement, “”We have been concurrently mourning the lack of our lovely sister Sheila, holding her spirit alive, helping within the quest for justice, and advocating for the wellbeing of Stella.”

And the child’s paternal grandmother, Kia Walker, said she plans to fight for guardianship.

“I would love custody of my granddaughter. I would love the chance to offer a secure area for her,” she said.

“She has maintained a relationship with Stella. She has had common contact along with her. Kia tried to get guardianship earlier than, when Stella was born,” said Michael Goldberg, the paternal grandmother’s attorney. “Kia loves her granddaughter. She desires what’s greatest for her. She stands prepared, prepared and capable of take care of her and to like her and to be there for her.”

Walker got here to the airport Wednesday morning, hoping to see her granddaughter, however the lady was whisked away.

Schaefer referred to as Walker as she was leaving the airport, and he declined to touch upon the scenario.

Walker stated she talks to her son twice per week, and he totally helps his mom making an attempt to get custody.

Mack’s lawyer vowing to battle any makes an attempt to take away the six-year-old from the non permanent guardian her mom has chosen for her. Mack’s speedy drawback nevertheless might be to battle these expenses. If convicted, she faces as much as life in jail.

The killing generated nationwide and worldwide consideration for years, partially due to pictures of the suitcase that appeared far too small to carry an grownup lady’s physique.

The badly crushed physique of her mom, rich Chicago socialite Sheila von Wiese-Mack, was discovered within the suitcase contained in the trunk of a taxi parked on the upscale St. Regis Bali Resort in August 2014.

Mack reportedly had a troubled relationship along with her mom, with officers within the U.S. confirming that police had been referred to as to the household’s Oak Park, Illinois, house dozens of occasions.

Mack, who was virtually 19 and some weeks pregnant on the time of the incident, and her then-21-year-old boyfriend, Schaefer, had been arrested a day after Wiese-Mack’s physique was discovered after they had been discovered at a resort about 6 miles from the St. Regis.

Their daughter, Stella Schaefer, was born shortly earlier than her mother and father had been convicted in 2015. Under Indonesian regulation, she was allowed to reside along with her mom in her cell in Kerobokan feminine jail till she turned 2, when Mack gave custody of her younger daughter to an Australian lady till her launch from jail.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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