A judge has scheduled a preliminary hearing for a defendant accused of murder in the death of a Modesto man found buried in a shallow grave.
Mario Amado Beltran, 29, has pleaded not guilty to one count of murder and denied an enhancement that alleges he fired a gun during the homicide. Authorities believe Beltran is responsible for the shooting death of Ricky Cadruvi, 58, who was reported missing Christmas Day.
On Jan. 16, authorities found Cadruvi’s body buried near Beltran’s rural home on Broyles Road, just north of Paradise Road and west of Modesto.
Stanislaus Superior Court Judge Linda McFadden scheduled Beltran’s preliminary hearing to start Feb. 17. At the conclusion of the hearing, the judge will determine whether there is enough evidence for Beltran to stand trial.
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The defendant remains in custody at the Stanislaus County Jail.