Murder retrial starts in Denver over body found near Moab, Utah

Joong Rhee accused of killing Hae C. Park

DENVER - The retrial of a man accused of killing his business partner and dumping his body near Moab, Utah, is under way.

Joong Rhee's original murder trial in Denver ended in a hung jury in September.

The Denver Post reports that in opening arguments of the retrial Tuesday, a prosecutor told jurors Rhee killed Hae C. Park after filing a deed of trust that gave him title to land owned by Park and his family. The deed required Park to give the parcel to Rhee if Park failed to repay Rhee a $300,000 loan.

Rhee and Park were business partners in a Moab, Utah, motel.

On April 5, 2011, Adams County detectives discovered what appeared to be a crime scene at Rhee’s office, and contacted the Denver Police Department. Police said evidence gathered at the office supported their theory that Park died at the location.

Rhee's lawyer, Lisa Arnolds, contends Rhee killed Park in self-defense and then made a mistake in trying to cover up the death. Park's body was found in 2010.