A glamorous young Canadian influencer and her boyfriend, who killed a man and shot his girlfriend, have been finally arrested in Hungary after months-long international manhunt, authorities said. Yun "Lucy" Lu Li, 25, and her boyfriend Oliver Karafa, 28, fled to Eastern Europe after killing a man and shooting his pregnant girlfriend — causing her to lose her unborn baby — in February.
Police in Hamilton, Ontario, said that the couple was arrested in Budapest on Saturday by Hungarian police, who received a tip off. The jet-setting duo — who have been dubbed the "millennial Bonnie and Clyde" by local media, have been evading arrest for months by moving from one country to another.
In the Net, Finally
Karafa and Li were wanted on charges of murder and attempted murder of Tyler Pratt, 39, a father of three who was shot and killed at a home in the Canadian city of Hamilton on February 28, according to Hamilton police. Pratt's 26-year-old girlfriend, who was pregnant at the time, was also hit by gunfire and was said to have lost her unborn baby.
Li and Karafa fled Canada by boarding a flight to Eastern Europe just a day after the incident.However, afteravoiding arrest for more than three months, the duo was arrested on Saturday after a major manhunt across more than five countries and two continents.
"It's been a journey that has taken a lot of strides and a lot of new information that has led to this," Hamilton Police Det.-Sgt. Jim Callender said about the arrests on Monday.
Police have not revealed a motive behind the attack but said the suspects and victims knew each other. It is unclear which of the two is accused of firing the fatal shot. His fiancée was hospitalized and has since been released and is recovering, Pratt's mother, Jonni Yeomans, told the Daily Beast.
End of a Long Chase
It wasn't easy nabbing Karafa and Li as the two had been on the run for long. "We've gone through a devastating time," Yeomans said. "We've lost a grandbaby through it, as well as our son."
On February 28, just after 7.15pm, the Hamilton Police Service responded to a shooting that occurred in an industrial park on Arvin Avenue in Stoney Creek. Pratt was pronounced dead at the scene. His girlfriend was hospitalized with serious injuries.
Investigators soon identified Karafa and Li as the people responsible for the shooting, although they till date haven't disclosed the motive behind the murder.
After ffleeing to Eastern Europe, the duo didn't stay in one country for long. They traveled through several countries, including Karafa's native Slovakia and the Czech Republic, before arriving in Budapest, Hamilton Police Det.-Sgt. Jim Callender told CBC.ca.
Finally the chase ended with Hungarian police playing an active part in the arrests. Hamilton Police Service recognized the efforts of the Hungarian Fugitive Active Search Team in the operation.
Li, as her Instagram account seemed to suggest, is a social media influencer. Photos from her accounts, which have since been taken down, show her posing in photoshoots with her triplet sisters—one of whom is a former Miss World Toronto contestant—clad in matching dresses, lingerie and swimwear.
"We are deeply shocked, disturbed and puzzled by Lucy's involvement in the unfortunate incident," the family said in a statement to a Chinese news outlet, which was translated by The National Post.
Karafa, however, has a criminal past. Karafa was sentenced to five years in prison in 2014 after he was found guilty of impaired driving causing death; driving while over legal limit of alcohol; criminal negligence cause death and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle cause death.
Karafa and Li are now awaiting extradition back to Canada to face charges of first-degree murder and attempted murder.
"We've been working since the incident of the shooting, not only domestically with our partners with the RCMP, but internationally through Interpol and our police agencies in Eastern Europe, specifically the Hungarian Active Search Team Callender said in a press briefing.
According to Yeomans, the arrest of the suspects coincides with the birthday of Pratt's sister, Abra.