Hollywood dreams: The murder of Juliana Redding
Despite the shroud of secrecy surrounding the prosecution's case, a motion for a request to increase Park's bail to $5 million shed some light on it. According papers written by Santa Monica Detective Karen Thompson submitted by the prosecution as part of the motion for higher bail, Juliana's pharmacist father, Greg Redding, had been "involved in a business negotiation with Dr. Munir Uwaydah that fell apart" some "five days before the murder charged in this case." According to Deputy District Attorney Alan Jackson, Uwaydah and Greg Redding had planned to start a pharmaceutical business together, but Redding had pulled out of the deal only days before his daughter was killed. The request for higher bail was made after detectives learned that Park had been employed by Dr. Uwaydah, a wealthy Marina del Rey, Calif., physician, and that large money transfers had allegedly been made from Dr. Uwaydah to Park and possibly to members of Park's family. At a later hearing, bail for Park was temporarily denied entirely. The judge ruled that a separate hearing was needed to prove that Park's bond would come from "a legitimate source of money."
Jackson argued to Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Keith Schwartz that Uwaydah wanted Park freed on bail so that she could flee the country and not implicate Uwaydah to the authorities. He played a clip from a recording that investigators had surreptitiously made of a phone conversation between Park and her sister in which Park's sister assured her that "Munir is going to bail you out."
"We believe Munir Uwaydah has a plan and he has begun that plan already," Jackson told the judge. Jackson also stated that authorities believed that Uwaydah has possibly sent "tens of millions" of dollars into overseas accounts, and could use those funds for Park's bail.
On Tuesday, July 20, 2010, Judge Schwartz set Park's bail at $3.5 million.
Authorities did not immediately disclose the precise capacity of Park's employment for Dr. Uwaydah, but Jackson argued at the July 20th bail hearing that Park worked for Uwaydah in a vaguely defined capacity. However, an attorney for Park told the Los Angeles Times that Park had served as Uwaydah's personal real estate broker and maintained that large cash payments to Park were not necessarily unusual. Park, considered a flight risk, was also accused of beating and strangling Redding and was charged with Redding's murder in what is now being described as a possible murder-for-hire case. Park pleaded not guilty.
According to Detective Thompson, Park was also suspected of being involved in "ongoing, complex, multi-layer medical fraud." Park has not yet addressed those additional fraud allegations, and a judge has admonished attorneys on both sides not to leak any information to the media because the investigation is continuing and the possibility of additional arrests remains. Thompson confirmed that investigators had become aware that the Berkshire Hathaway Insurance Company was withholding several million dollars in payments on medical claims that had been submitted by Uwaydah's medical practice. As of this writing, Uwaydah has not responded to allegations of fraud concerning those medical claims payments.