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Authorities arrest boyfriend and business partner of woman killed in California day spa blast

Stephen Beal was arrested on suspicion of possessing an unregistered destructive device; investigators found the device at a Long Beach residence

PUBLISHED : Friday, 18 May, 2018, 1:23am
UPDATED : Friday, 18 May, 2018, 3:42am

An explosion that ripped through a California day spa on Tuesday, killing the business owner and injuring two customers, does not appear to have been the result of an accident, authorities said.

Authorities have arrested the business associate and boyfriend of a woman who was killed in an explosion that ripped through her Aliso Viejo day spa earlier this week.

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Stephen Beal, 59, of Long Beach was arrested on suspicion of possessing an unregistered destructive device, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said Thursday.

Investigators found the device while serving a search warrant at a Long Beach residence, Eimiller said.

Beal is not being charged in connection with Tuesday’s explosion, which shook the two-story building so vigorously that people nearby thought there was an earthquake.

The spa owner, Ildiko Krajnyak, was killed in the blast, authorities said. 

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Two customers suffered injuries that required surgery, and one other person was treated for smoke inhalation.

In addition to the couple’s business partnership, a law enforcement source said Beal was the woman’s boyfriend.

In paperwork filed with the California secretary of state last month, Beal listed Krajnyak as the chief executive officer of a skin care and retail company he established last year.

That company, I and S Enterprises Inc., is based in the same building where the explosion occurred. Beal listed himself as the corporation’s secretary and chief financial officer.

In addition to the Long Beach residence, law enforcement officials searched three other locations Wednesday, including the damaged business and Krajnyak’s home in Trabuco Canyon, California.

Authorities are examining the victim’s romantic, personal and financial relationships, according to sources familiar with the investigation, who were not authorised to speak publicly and requested anonymity.