Southern California Custody Battle Looms for TV Producer

A Southern California family court in Los Angeles refused Friday to restore California child custody to a father whom Mexican authorities suspect may have been involved in his wife’s murder, according to the Associated Press. The two children of Bruce Beresford-Redman, a former producer of the hit TV show Survivor, and his late wife Monica have been living with their paternal grandparents. The grandparents currently have temporary custody of the five-year old girl and three-year old boy.

According to the AP the grandparents had petitioned the Los Angeles family court to restore custody to their son, the children’s father. The court rejected both that request and a request by the mother’s family that temporary custody be awarded to them. On Monday a Mexican court issued an arrest warrant for Bruce Beresford-Redman for the crime of “qualified homicide”, according to People Magazine. Beresford-Redman later issued a statement proclaiming his innocence, adding: “I am incensed at the suggestion that I could have had anything to do with” his wife’s death.

The children’s mother was found murdered in Cancun last month while the family was there on vacation. The AP reported last week that Beresford-Redman had been ordered to remain in Mexico, but also quoted his attorney saying that his client “has not been charged with a crime, had no legal obligation to remain in Mexico and (the attorney) insists (his client) is innocent in the death of his wife.” According to People, Mexican authorities confiscated Beresford-Redman’s passport and it is unclear how he managed to get back to the United States.

This obviously has the makings of a bitter, and perhaps lengthy, Los Angeles child custody proceeding. Since Beresford-Redman is the children’s biological father, much is likely to hinge on his exact legal status vis-à-vis Mexican authorities and the legal proceedings surrounding Monica Beresford-Redman’s death.

Like several other stories I have written about in recent weeks this one is a reminder of the complex nature of any Orange County, Los Angeles or San Bernardino child custody dispute that touches on international affairs and rulings by foreign courts. In cases like these the assistance of an experienced Orange County custody and visitation attorney is especially important. An Orange County family law specialist can help guide you through the often confusing intricacies of the justice system, defending your rights and helping to preserve the best environment for your children and family.

AP: Change of custody denied for children of slain mom

AP: Producer seeks custody of children with slain wife

People: Arrest warrant issued for producer in wife’s death