Woman relieved by fugitive's arrest in Mexico decades later

AP News
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Posted: Sep 30, 2015 7:26 PM

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — An Idaho woman expressed relief Wednesday that a fugitive wanted in the kidnapping and torture of two women in suburban Portland, Oregon, nearly a quarter century ago has been arrested at a hotel in Mexico.

Michaelle Dierich of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, said she was a victim of Paul Erven Jackson in 1988 while living in the Portland area.

"Just gratitude and relief," Dierich said of her feelings upon learning he was arrested Monday by Mexican immigration authorities in downtown Guadalajara. He is now being held in a Los Angeles jail.

She is "100 percent committed" to testifying against him at trial, Dierich, 47, told The Associated Press in a telephone interview.

Jackson, 48, was most recently featured on CNN's John Walsh's "The Hunt," and was profiled several times on "America's Most Wanted."

A tipster who watched "The Hunt" told authorities to look in Guadalajara and provided a possible name, authorities have said. Investigators used the information to find out where he was working.

Jackson appears to have been living in Mexico for several years under the name Paul Bennett Hamilton, Deputy U.S. Marshal Eric Wahlstrom said.

Jackson denied his identity when contacted by Mexican authorities on his way to work.

Police said Jackson and his older brother, Vance Roberts, kidnapped prostitutes and drove them to Roberts' home in Hillsboro, west of Portland. The brothers were arrested in 1990, but vanished early the following year after their mother bailed them out of jail.

Roberts surrendered in September 2006 and was convicted the following year of kidnapping and numerous sex crimes. The 61-year-old is serving a 108-year prison sentence.

Dierich was 20 in September 1988 when she was kidnapped after agreeing to have sex with Roberts, according to details from Roberts' trial. She said Roberts kept her in a locked closet when she wasn't chained to a bed. She was sexually abused for a week.

Dierich said she never lost a fear that the men might return.

"I lived my faith, but I also had some fear," she said. "I was concerned about other people he was victimizing. "

Dierich has spoken publicly about the case for years.

"I've had a little bit of closure," she said.