A California judge has determined there is sufficient evidence for Shawnigan Lake’s Anthony Michael Kubica to stand trial for murder.
John Hall, a public information officer with Riverside County’s district attorney’s office, said Judge Edward Forstenzer concluded there was reasonable probable cause to order Kubica to stand trial after his preliminary hearing ended on Feb. 25.
“His next court date is on March 11 for what is called an ‘information arraignment’,” Hall said.
“That is the arraignment on any charges after the preliminary hearing and, in this case, the murder count. The hearings after this upcoming arraignment are called a trial readiness conference. At some point in the future, they will schedule a potential date for trial.”
Kubica spent approximately eight months in a Canadian jail last year after the B.C. Supreme Court ruled there was enough evidence for him to be extradited to face charges of murder and kidnapping of Palm Springs resident Marie Darling, a 78-year-old wealthy widow who disappeared from her home 28 years ago.
After the Supreme Court’s ruling, the case went to former Federal Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould whose approval is required for an extradition to take place after a judicial process determines there is enough evidence for a suspect to face charges in another country.
It took almost eight months for the minister’s approval for Kubica’s extradition, which finally took place late last year.
Kubica is currently being held at a detention center in Murrieta, California, in lieu of $1 million bail.
According to the declaration in support of an arrest warrant for Kubica that was filed with the Superior Court of California in Oct. 2017, Darling’s body was found by hikers by the side of a highway shortly after her disappearance 28 years ago in a sleeping bag with her feet wrapped in duct tape.
An autopsy performed on the body found the cause of death to be blunt force trauma to the head.
More than $184,000 was transferred out of Darling’s Swiss bank account to an account in Anguilla that Kubica, who lived and operated a company in Palm Springs at the time, had allegedly opened around the same time the body was found.