Heather Mack

Coverage of Heather Mack and the legal cases surrounding the 2014 murder of her mother, Sheila von Wiese-Mack.

A judge is expected to consider a request to release Heather Mack during a hearing Thursday in Chicago. Mack’s attorneys insist she poses no danger to the community and is not a flight risk.
The future of Heather Mack’s daughter has been uncertain since her arrival with Mack in the United States a little more than a year ago. Mack spent seven years in Indonesian custody for helping murder her own mother, Sheila von Wiese-Mack.
Heather Mack, accused of conspiring to kill her mother, has been in federal custody since November 2021.
Lisa Hellmann will become the third person to care for Estelle Schaefer, known as Stella, since the child’s November 2021 arrival in the United States with her mother from Indonesia.
Mack’s daughter is at the center of an ongoing bench trial. A bitter custody dispute has swirled around the girl ever since she arrived here with her mother last fall.
New duties at high court for U.S. District Judge Robert Dow Jr. could further delay racketeering case of Ald. Edward M. Burke, which Dow has presided over since 2019.
The body of Mack’s mother, Sheila von Wiese-Mack, was discovered inside a suitcase outside the St. Regis Bali Resort in 2014. Mack and her boyfriend were arrested the next day, and they stood trial in Indonesia.
Four people are seeking custody of 7-year-old Estelle Schaefer, known as Stella, in the trial before Cook County Judge Stephanie Miller. Mack and her onetime boyfriend, Tommy Schaefer, are charged in federal court with plotting the overseas murder of Mack’s mother, Sheila von Wiese-Mack.
Oshar Suartama confirmed for a judge Friday that she had arrived in Illinois and had reunited with 7-year-old Estelle Schaefer, known as Stella. The child’s therapist has told the judge “there’s no question” Stella sees that woman “as her mother and the primary caretaker in her life.”
It wasn’t clear Friday whether Oshar Suartama could get to Chicago before Stella’s current caretaker, Vanessa Favia, has to relinquish custody. If she can’t, the child could wind up with Diana Roque Ellis of Beverly Hills, a friend of Mack’s murdered mother.
SNEED SCOOP: In a hand-written statement filed in court Wednesday, Mack says she no longer wants her 7-year-old daughter to go to Indonesia while Mack faces new charges in the Bali murder of Oak Parker Sheila von Wiese-Mack.
Mack, who is being held in Chicago’s downtown Metropolitan Correctional Center, has been at the center of an international legal saga ever since the gruesome discovery of her mother’s body inside a suitcase outside the St. Regis Bali Resort on Aug. 12, 2014.
SNEED EXCLUSIVE: Diana Ellis has made a move in Cook County court for Stella, 6, to come live with her in California. But the filing opens a window into the fraught relationship between Sheila von Wiese-Mack and her daughter before she was killed in Bali.
Despite having just been released after serving seven years in an Indonesian prison, Mack should be prepared for another long stay behind bars. A prosecutor said evidence in the case is “truly, truly voluminous.”
Mack’s lawyers would have to convince the judge that arrangements can be made to protect the community from Mack and ensure her appearance at court hearings.
Mack’s arrest at O’Hare Tuesday marks the start of a new chapter in Mack’s yearslong international drama — one that could take years more to play out and puts the welfare of Mack’s 6-year-old daughter, Stella, into question.
Mack’s lawyer said she is due to land at O’Hare Airport around 9:30 a.m. Wednesday on a flight from Seoul. He said he expects Mack will at least be detained by federal authorities who may want to question her about the murder of Sheila von Wiese-Mack of Oak Park.
The Oak Park woman, who was convicted in Indonesia for helping to kill her mother in 2014, will fly from Jakarta to Chicago after she was closely escorted to the airport, an official from Bali said.
The Oak Park woman didn’t say who she and her 6-year-old daughter would be staying with in Chicago, though she told the New York Post that several of her friends “have been supportive.”
An Indonesian court sentenced Mack to 10 years in prison for assisting in her mother’s murder and stuffing the body in a suitcase.
Heather Mack was 18 when she was arrested a day after the body of her mother, Sheila von Wiese-Mack, 62, was discovered in the trunk of a taxi parked near the St. Regis Bali Resort.
The FBI immediately initiated an investigation into the murder, and Mack’s attorneys have acknowledged a U.S. grand jury investigation into Mack’s role. The feds aren’t commenting.
Rebecca Pallmeyer presided over the corruption trial of former Gov. George Ryan. She sentenced him in 2006 to six-and-a-half years in prison.