Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Trials of Christian Longo


On a tip from a tour guide who'd seen the posters, FBI investigators and some 20 Mexican officials, including state and federal police and immigration officials, had Longo in surveillance on January 13 at the Tulum beach camp.

Early in the morning of January 14, Longo was relaxing at a beachside cabana with some English friends. They were drinking beer and passing around a joint when the police arrived, kicking in the door and making everyone lie down on the floor. Chris assumed it was a drug raid.

But one of the policemen referred to a photo and went directly to him. "Are you Christian Michael Longo?" As always, Chris was calm when confronted, and confirmed his identity. He was given the option of going back to the US immediately, or fight extradition, which meant he may have to spend up to six months in a Mexican jail. Longo opted to return to the U.S.

In searching Longo's cabana, police found one of his wife's credit cards, Argentine pesoswhich they believed had been stolen from the hostel guests in Cancunand a notebook in which he had taken notes about the Mayan ruins and other travels.

Christian Longo, arrested
Christian Longo, arrested

The police confiscated his belongings, and as they did, he didn't even glance at his horrified girlfriend. He left the camp in handcuffs.

On January 23, 2003, his 28th birthday, Longo was indicted on seven counts of aggravated murder.

As the country held its breath, Longo, in a move that surprised everyone, pleaded guilty to killing his wife and 2-year-old Madison, and not guilty to killing the two older children.

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