BARSTOW - The man sought in the 2002 stabbing death of a Lenwood woman is finally in the sheriff's custody and is scheduled to appear in court on Thursday.

After nearly five years on the lam, a protracted court battle in Australia and one unsuccessful extradition attempt, Lawrence Rivera, 37, is sitting in a cell at the West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga, according to Cindy Beavers, a spokeswoman for the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department. Beavers said Rivera was booked into the jail on Wednesday morning and is being held on $1 million bail. He is scheduled to appear in court for arraignment on murder charges related to the 2002 stabbing death of Kristina Garcia, a Lenwood woman.

Rivera was handcuffed, shackled and escorted by seven United States marshals to a private jet, a report in the Australian Daily Telegraph stated. An extradition attempted at the end of December failed when Rivera fought and threatened the marshals and deputies from the sheriff's department bringing him aboard a commercial flight to Los Angeles.

Garcia's body was found in the desert near Yermo in May 2002. After investigators questioned Rivera, who was a co-worker with Garcia at Raytheon Corporation at Fort Irwin, about the killing he fled the country, previous reports indicate.

He was arrested in September 2002 by authorities in Bathurst, Australia, about 200 miles from Sydney. In December 2002, the Australian courts ordered Rivera extradited back to California after the San Bernardino County District Attorney's office agreed not to seek the death penalty in the case.

Rivera appealed the extradition order many times, taking the case to the High Court of the Federal Court of Australia.

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