Man in handcuffs - illustrative.
(photo credit: INGIMAGE / ASAP)
A Herzliya resident accused of killing his mother in her Florida home nearly six years ago is facing extradition after he was arrested in Israel on Sunday.
The Justice Ministry is preparing to extradite him to the United States to stand trial for first-degree murder.
According to the Ministry, on the night of January 9, 2012, Thomas Yosef Gross, now 63, allegedly drugged his mother, Ina Gross, 78, placed her body in her Lakewood home’s garage, and stabbed her to death with a knife.
The following morning, Gross called the police claiming he found the body and murder weapon in the garage. He said she was killed in a botched robbery or suicide attempt.
Gross, a married father of three, holds dual US-Israeli citizenship.
Newsflash from the time of Ina Gross's murder. (Youtube: Suncoast News Network)
At the time of the murder he was visiting his mother from Israel to attend a memorial service for his father, Sam, who had died two years earlier of cancer, records state. He was scheduled to fly back to Israel the day after the murder.
According to an affidavit given to Gross’s sister, the motive for the murder was his mother’s refusal to continue transferring money to him from her reportedly $4 million estate. Gross received $690,645 in loans from his mother by the time of her death, court records state.
The US government first filed a petition for Gross’s extradition last February. It remains unclear why he wasn’t arrested until Sunday.
In its petition, US authorities said that enough circumstantial evidence was gathered in the cold case to conclude that Gross committed the murder.
The Ina Gross Justice Project website, created to monitor the unsolved murder, stated that Gross was named a suspect early on, but that he hired an attorney and was uncooperative with Florida’s Manatee County Sheriff’s Office investigation.