Tiffany Li, the wealthy daughter of a Chinese developer who prosecutors say got away with the 2016 murder of the father of her two children, has agreed to settle a civil case brought by the victim's mother rather than go to trial this month.
The wrongful death suit brought by Colleen Cudd, the mother of murdered father of two Keith Green, was already dredging up details and eliciting statements from Li that threatened to further implicate her in Green's murder. Scheduled to move forward this month, the trial in San Mateo County has now been vacated after news of a settlement on Wednesday morning.
As KRON4 reports, a hearing over Zoom only lasted a few minutes, and attorneys for Cudd and Li announced that they had reached a settlement, the amount of which was not disclosed.
Cudd's attorney, Frank Pitre, reportedly told Judge Danny Chou, "The train is back on track and headed in the right direction. We've had good cooperation lately with the defense."
Li was acquitted of Green's murder-for-hire in 2019, and a mistrial was declared against her ex-boyfriend, MMA fighter Kaveh Bayat. They were accused of killing Green following a meeting he had with Li at the Pancake House in Millbrae — a killing that prosecutors believe Bayat carried out at Li's direction. They then allegedly hired their friend and sometime security detail Olivier Adella — whose real name turns out to be Mustapha Traore — to dispose of the body, paying him $35,000. He was then used as a "fall guy," he said, by Bayat and Li — and indeed defense attorneys continued to cast doubt about his role in the killing during the trial.
Adella/Traore reiterated this story in an interview for the civil trial last trial, and he made clear that he still wanted to see Li go down for the murder.
"Don’t worry, I’ll see you at the trial, my friend," he reportedly said to Li's lawyer. "Your client … she beat the murder trial, right, because the prosecutor … was just extremely negligent, extremely incompetent with the sheriff. But the civil trial? Come on, man, she’s not going to beat that. She killed the father of her two kids."
All three suspects are out free now, and it remains an open question whether anyone will ever bear responsibility for Green's death.
San Mateo County DA Steve Wagstaffe has continued to tell the media that he believes Li is guilty of masterminding the murder, but he says there was not enough evidence to convict her.
It's clear, though, that Li and her attorneys wanted to avoid an OJ-style conviction after the fact in a civil case. So, we hope Ms. Cudd is well compensated.
Li has since moved with her children to China, despite having lived most of her life in the Bay Area.
Related: Few More Details Emerge From Deposition of Hillsborough Heiress in 2016 Murder; Could Civil Case Eventually Lead to Conviction?