HUNTER: Bringing accused Millennial Bonnie and Clyde killers home

Oliver Karafa and Lucy Li face extradition after arrest in Hungary

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Oliver Karafa and Lucy Li were utterly oblivious.

It was a lovely Saturday night in the 6th District of Budapest — also known as Terezvaros — a trendy hood packed with nightclubs, restaurants, entertainment and lots of young people.

Karafa and Li probably didn’t notice that they were being watched by bounty hunters from the Hungarian federal police.

After all, both are addicted to social media. Maybe they were posing for one of their endless selfies.

Maybe after nearly four months on the run, the Millennial Bonnie and Clyde were getting comfortable. Cops said they had already enjoyed the sights of Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

But on Saturday, the photo-friendly twosome were out on the streets of the 6th District when their game of cat and mouse came to an abrupt conclusion.

Sources in Hungary told the Toronto Sun that they had just left their residence — believed to be an Airbnb — when they were surrounded by “bounty hunters.”

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Busted. Oliver Karafa, 28, left, and Yun (Lucy) Lu Li, 25.
Busted. Oliver Karafa, 28, left, and Yun (Lucy) Lu Li, 25. Photo by HANDOUT /HAMILTON POLICE

Karafa and Li were wanted for the Feb. 28 first-degree murder of Tyler Pratt, 39. The B.C. man was gunned down in a lonely industrial area of Stoney Creek. His female companion was also shot and is still recovering.

And then, within 24 hours, the “influencer” and the rich kid went on the run. Czech Republic. Slovakia. And finally, Budapest and the end of the line.

Dr. Christopher Jano has practiced international criminal law in Budapest for the past 25 years. He is originally from Toronto, growing up in Don Mills, North York and Rosedale.

Jano told the Sun that life for Karafa and Li now is 23 hours a day in their cells in a Hungarian prison.

“Is it the Bangkok Hilton? No,” Jano said, referring to the infamous jail in Thailand. “They’re allowed out of their cells for just one hour a day. The prison itself follows all the EU rules.”

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Tyler Pratt was the third murder in Hamilton in 2021.
Tyler Pratt was the third murder in Hamilton in 2021. Photo by HANDOUT /HAMILTON POLICE

He added: “But for trendy, young rich kids, the hard part will be being insulated from the world. No Facebook, no mobile phone, no social media.”

The graduate of the University of Western Ontario said bringing the social media-loving accused killers home to face the justice system should be a straight-forward affair.

Hungary has similar laws to Canada when it comes to murder, Jano said.

“The only exception would be if the charges were politically driven [like in China or North Korea] or if there was a chance the person could be executed,” he said.

  1. Oliver Karafa, 28, left, and Yun (Lucy) Lu Li, 25.

    Bounty hunters located accused millennial Bonnie and Clyde killers in Hungary: Sources

  2. Hamilton Police have issued first-degree murder warrants for Oliver Karafa, 28,left, and Yun (Lucy) Lu Li, 25.

    HUNTER: Manhunt zeroes in on accused millennial Bonnie and Clyde killers

  3. Hamilton Police have issued first-degree murder warrants for Oliver Karafa, 28,left, and Yun (Lucy) Lu Li, 25.

    HUNTER: New twists in alleged Millennial Bonnie and Clyde murder

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Jano said if the twosome waive extradition, they will be back in Canada probably within three weeks. If they fight it, giving them the boot will take longer.

“COVID has made things more complicated,” he noted, adding Hungary has an extradition treaty.

In Hungary, extradition is a two-part process — the judiciary branch weighs the evidence and then the attorney general signs off, he said.

Jano remains perplexed why Karafa and Li travelled to Hungary in the first place. Because Karafa is a dual Slovakian-Canadian citizen, the courts in that country may have given the couple a more sympathetic hearing.

“He should have stayed in Slovakia. He would be in a much better position,” Jano said.

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Ultimately, the only place the social media-loving pair could have found safety was off the grid, he said. Being on the run and hiding from cops is exhausting and lonely.

The pair ran the risk of being spotted in the hard-partying section of Budapest where they were busted and where there is no last call — ever. The zone attracts boozers from across Europe and the rest of the world.

Jano likened it to Toronto’s Entertainment District but open 24 hours a day.

“Mind you,” Jano said, reflecting on the choice of the Hungarian capital for the couple, “Budapest is a pretty cool city.”

bhunter@postmedia.com

@HunterTOSun

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