PUERTO VALLARTA, Mexico – Three U.S. bounty hunters, a TV producer and an actor will face criminal charges for leaving Mexican police out of the dramatic capture of cosmetics heir and convicted rapist Andrew Luster (search) in this resort city, a local prosecutor said.
Hawaii-based bounty hunter Duane "Dog" Chapman (search), his brother Timothy, his son Leland, reality TV producer Jeff Sells (search) and actor Boris Krutonog were arrested about two hours after they captured Luster near a Puerto Vallarta taco stand where he had just ordered breakfast.
Prosecutor Marco Roberto Juarez (search) said Friday that he was charging the five with criminal association and illegal deprivation of liberty, which is like kidnapping without requesting a ransom. Both charges carry a maximum of four years in prison.
"These people carried out the detention here without any support or collaboration from any Mexican authority," Juarez said.
On Thursday, authorities expelled Luster to the United States, where he is appealing a 124-year prison sentence for the drugging and rape of three women.
The five remaining Americans wore brown prison uniforms and stood behind a green metal grate Friday as a court clerk questioned them through a translator about their ages, names and other details and formally informed them of the charges.
They initially appeared tense and haggard, but smiles broke out as attorneys informed them that they would be able to post bail, which was set by a judge at $1,430 each.
All five posted bail, but instead of being set free they were being turned over to the National Immigration Institute for questioning. They were taken Friday night from the prison in a white van headed for the immigration institute's offices.
Before coming to Mexico, Chapman had told reporters he hoped to reap a reward from the $1 million in bail that Luster had forfeited by fleeing during his trial. But bounty hunters have no special privileges in Mexico.
Krutonog, who has had roles in films such as "The Italian Job," "Air Force One" and "Hunt for Red October," has declined to say what he was doing with the Chapmans.
Sells was apparently working on a television program about Chapman.