US murder suspect went undetected in Italy for 2 weeks

Italian Police officer Marco Sangiovanni holds a mugshot of Beverly McCallum as he meets the media in Rome, Friday, Feb. 14, 2020. An American woman wanted in the 2002 death of her husband, whose remains were so badly burned they weren’t identified for more than a decade, was arrested in Rome after a multinational search. Rome police arrested Beverly McCallum, 59, after she and her teenage son checked into a Rome hotel on the northwest outskirts of the Italian capital. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

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ROME (AP) — An American woman wanted in her husband’s 2002 murder was able to stay at the Rome hotel where she was arrested for nearly two weeks before an international arrest warrant turned up in the system identifying her as a murder suspect, Italian police said Friday.

Beverly McCallum, 59, was cooperative when she was arrested around 2:30 a.m. Thursday morning in a hotel on the northwest outskirts of the Italian capital, officials said.

While she had been staying in the small business hotel since early February, her arrival from Pakistan via Saudi Arabia did not raise red flags because no international arrest warrant had been issued, the head of the Rome police rapid reaction unit told The Associated Press.

The date of her arrival was not clear. McCallum, who has Italian heritage, appeared to be looking into whether she could remain in Italy, Marco Sangiovanni said.

She was arrested on an Interpol warrant. In Italy, hotels are required to submit identities of guests taken from their official travel documents to local police offices.

U.S. authorities had been seeking to extradite McCallum from Pakistan, where she was believed to have been living, to stand trial in the slaying of her husband, Robert Caraballo. He was beaten and suffocated in 2002, and his body was dumped and burned in a blueberry patch in western Michigan. The remains were so badly burned that they were not identified for more than a decade.

Her 17-year-old son, who was staying with her in the hotel, has been turned over to Italian social services, while McCallum was in Rome’s Rebibbia prison.

Chris Anderson, chief assistant prosecuting attorney in Michigan’s Eaton County, said his office has been communicating with the U.S. Justice Department. Anderson said he expects McCallum to eventually return to the U.S. to face charges, but he does not know the timeline for her extradition.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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