Congressman Tim Ryan Calls on Brazilian President to Return Claudia Hoerig to U.S. to Stand Trial for Murder of Karl Hoerig

Jun 29, 2015 Issues: Justice for Karl Hoerig

Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan is calling on Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff, who is visiting the United States this week, to return Claudia Hoerig to our country to stand trial in the murder of her husband Karl in Newton Falls,OH in 2007. President Rousseff is coming to the United States looking for export opportunities, which should be tied to positive actions in the Hoerig case.

“If President Rousseff is looking to do business with the United States, we need to look for assurances from her that Brazil will be a real trading partner and not harbor criminals who commit crimes against American citizens,” said Congressman Tim Ryan. “The Hoerig family has waited over eight years for justice to be done. I will continue this fight, and President Rousseff needs to know that we will not rest until Claudia Hoerig is returned to stand trial.”

Congressman Ryan recently introduced two bills in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Karl Hoerig Foreign Aid Suspension Act (HR 2784) and the End Immunity for Brazilian Criminals Act (HR 2785). Both bills are in response to the death over eight years ago of U.S. Air Force Reserve Major Karl Hoerig, who was murdered by his wife Claudia Hoerig. He was a decorated combat pilot, with nearly 200 combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. He was also a loved father, brother and son. An autopsy revealed he was shot in the back of the head while tying his shoes. Before Karl’s body was found, Claudia used Karl's status as a commercial airlines pilot to flee via a free plane trip to her native Brazil, where she remains to this day.Hoerig is returned to stand trial.”

Unfortunately, the United States continues to provide Brazil with foreign aid and continues to issue visas to Brazilian citizens to come into this country. These pieces of legislation would stop providing monetary aid to a nation that does not support reciprocal extradition (HR 2784), and stop allowing individuals to come into our country who can kill or commit other crimes and flee to Brazil with immunity (HR 2785).

Congressman Ryan has written several letters over the years to Brazilian and American authorities requesting assistance in bringing Claudia Hoerig to justice. Although she revoked her Brazilian citizenship to become a U.S. citizen 14 years ago, Brazil has still failed to live up to their international obligations to allow her to be brought to justice. Though U.S. policy is to extradite to Brazil persons facing charges in that country, Brazil’s policy is to refrain from extradition of its nationals. As a result, despite being officially wanted for murder in the United States, Claudia Hoerig lives in Brazil, without the fear of being extradited.