The Daily Telegraph

Son of Clooney’s ex-agent arrested after torso found stuffed inside bin

Body part at shopping centre still unidentifi­ed, but authoritie­s believe it is that of suspect’s wife

- By Susie Coen US Correspond­ent in New York

THE SON of George Clooney’s former agent has been arrested on suspicion of murder after the torso of a woman believed to be his wife was found stuffed in a duffel bag in a bin at a shopping centre.

Samuel Haskell Jr, 35, whose father also represente­d A-list stars including Dolly Parton, Whoopi Goldberg, as well as the Duke of Edinburgh, was arrested hours after the dismembere­d body part was found five miles from his Los Angeles home.

While the victim has not been formally identified, officials said it was thought to be Mr Haskell Jr’s wife, Mei Li Haskell.

Her parents, Goashan Li, 71, and Yanxiang Wang, 64, who lived with the couple in a single-storey home in the LA suburb of Tarzana, are also unaccounte­d for.

“Blood evidence and other items” were found at Mr Haskell Jr’s home, said Detective Efren Gutierrez of Los Angeles Police.

Mr and Mrs Haskell Jr’s three children are being cared for by family members, but Mrs Haskell and her parents have not been located.

“The reason we’re concerned with their whereabout­s is they would normally be home during these hours,” Mr Gutierrez said during a news conference last week. “Attempts have been made to contact them by cell phone … no answers. Same with Mei, she is unaccounte­d for … attempts have been made to call her phone and still no answer,” he added.

The body part was discovered the morning after workers reported seeing what appeared to be human remains in Mr Haskell Jr’s driveway.

They told NBC they were “tricked” by the suspect who paid them $500 to remove three “bags full of rocks” from his home.

The men said they left the bags on the driveway, returned the fee and drove to the police station to report the incident.

The torso was found by a homeless man searching through a bin between a restaurant and a hair salon.

The remains were allegedly linked to Mr Haskell Jr’s home after investigat­ors examined CCTV footage.

Police Captain Scot Williams said the ‘Mei is unaccounte­d for. Attempts have been made to call her phone ... but [there has been] no answer’

torso is assumed to be the suspect’s wife. He said detectives are “still tracking down leads and witnesses”.

Mr Haskell Jr is the son of Emmy-winning producer and Hollywood agent Samuel Haskell Sr, and the former Miss Mississipp­i, Mary Donnelly Haskell.

Mr Haskell Snr was an agent with the William Morris Agency for 27 years. He also produced Dolly Parton’s specials Dolly Parton’s Magic Mountain Christmas and Dolly Parton’s Coat of Many Colors.

Mr Haskell Jr was arrested and charged with two counts of assault with a deadly weapon in 2008, according to the L A Times. He pleaded no contest to battery and was placed on three years’ probation.

Mr Haskell Jr is being held in custody. His bail was set at $2million.

His father is the president and co-founder of production company Magnolia Hill Production­s. Its website describes him as one of the “most powerful agents and dealmakers in the business” during his time at William Morris Agency. In 2007 he was named alongside Oprah Winfrey as one of the most influentia­l people in television over the previous 25 years.

 ?? ??
 ?? ??
 ?? ??
 ?? ??
 ?? ?? Samuel Haskell Jnr, main, is now in custody. His wife, Mei, top, and her parents, above, are still listed as missing; below, the dumpster where the torso was found
Samuel Haskell Jnr, main, is now in custody. His wife, Mei, top, and her parents, above, are still listed as missing; below, the dumpster where the torso was found

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United Kingdom