Surprise appearance results in sudden turn in case
(Albuquerque) 36-year-old Diazien Hossencofft has taken the first step toward keeping his end of a bargain. A plea bargain, that is.
By pleading guilty to his estranged wife’s murder and a dozen other crimes this afternoon, Hossencofft set the wheels into motion for a deal cut with prosecutors.
After the plea, Assistant District Attorney Paul Spiers told reporters, “For acknowledging his responsibility in Girly’s death, he (Mr. Hossencofft) is to be commended. But it is no occasion for joy because it is a sad confirmation that she (Ms.Girly Chew Hossencofft) has been murdered and that she is dead.”
Spiers also stated he hopes that the guilty plea will help bring some peace to the victim’s parents (Mr. and Mrs. Chew Shing Kheng) and brother (Andrew Chew) in Malaysia “who have suffered a loss that will bleed for a very long time…”
Last summer, Ms. Chew’s father wrote District Attorney Kari Brandenburg a letter stating his desire that Diazien Hossencofft receive the death penalty.
Hossencofft’s agreement to provide additional statements to authorities may be relevant to locating Girly Chew Hossencofft’s remains. Her body has never been located.
Ms. Hossencofft was last seen September 9, 1999. Her clothing–stained with her own blood–was found with duct tape and a blue tarp along Highway 60 west of Magdalena on September 10, 1999. Human hair, deer hair and other forensic evidence was also discovered with Ms. Hossencofft’s clothing along the highway.
A large-scale search involving more than a hundred people, two helicopters, a plane, horses, and several cadaver dogs was conducted near Magdalena over two days in late June of 2000. However, investigators said the search did not produce any significant leads.
Another area of interest to investigators is the Rio Puerco west of Albuquerque. According to police reports, co-defendants Linda Henning and Bill Miller were known to go target shooting in the remote area.
The cases of Henning and Miller have yet to go to trial. Henning had been scheduled to go to trial jointly with Hossencofft January 14. A new trial date for Henning has not been set. Miller’s trial is scheduled for March.
Following today’s plea, Diazien Hossencofft reached me by telephone in the early evening. He stated he wished to sit down with me next week for an exclusive interview about the case.