When Hossein Nayeri escaped from an Orange County jail on Jan. 22, Clovis West graduate Naomi Kevorkian-Rhodus feared for her life and was relieved when he was captured Saturday in San Francisco, her attorney Eric Schweitzer said.
“We anticipate that the risk this man poses to my client and to others will never again be underestimated by the relevant authorities,” Schweitzer said in a prepared statement.
Kevorkian-Rhodus, the former wife of Nayeri’s alleged accomplice in a 2012 kidnapping and torture case, was arrested in November 2013 on suspicion of helping to plan the kidnapping. She was released after about a year of pretrial detention.
His client has been cooperating with authorities, Schweitzer said.
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Nayeri is a Clovis West graduate and has ties to the Fresno area.
He was arrested Saturday after a man in Golden Gate Park pointed out to police the white van stolen in Southern California by Jonathan Tieu, who escaped from an Orange County jail with Nayeri.
On Friday, the Fresno County Sheriff’s Office received a “be on the lookout” alert from Orange County law enforcement and was told that the fugitives could be heading toward the Fresno area, sheriff’s spokesman Tony Botti said.
The Sheriff’s Office offered its assistance to Orange County authorities but was not actively investigating or interviewing Nayeri’s former associates, Botti said.
In 2005, Nayeri was behind the wheel in a drunken driving accident that killed Ehsan Tousi. Before the 2009 trial in Madera, Kevorkian-Rhodus and her ex-husband, Ryan Kevorkian, wrote letters asking the court for leniency in Nayeri’s sentence.
Ultimately, Nayeri received five years’ felony probation and avoided a possible four-year, eight-month prison term.