Produced by Paul LaRosa, Josh Yager, Ana Real, Avi Cohen, Ira Sutow,
Jamie Stolz and Alec Sirken
"One of the things that upsets me a great deal though is that no one's really talking about Monica and about what an amazing person she was. She was funny and warm and bright and beautiful," Bruce Beresford-Redman told "48 Hours Mystery."
In his only interview, Beresford-Redman recalls his wife -- the woman he calls the love of his life and also the woman he's accused of suffocating.
"She was as lovely a person inside as she was beautiful on the outside. And in all the accusations and all the discussion and everything, I think very few people have said anything about her, about what my children have lost, what I have lost," he said. "She was amazing."
Amazing... and friends say Monica was a perfect match for Bruce... a behind-the-scenes star in the world of reality television.
"He's a very, very bright, talented guy. ...He and a partner created 'Pimp My Ride'....Bruce was involved in 'The Contender'" said Jeff Wald, who worked with Bruce on "The Contender," a boxing reality show with a high testosterone cast who tried everyone's patience.
"He handled Sylvester Stallone and Sugar Ray Leonard and 16 boxers," Wald explained. "The guys who hit other guys for a living can be very volatile and very physical... and I watched him diffuse situations...never raising his voice, never being imposing. He's a big guy, Bruce... he did it in a really smart way. I was very impressed with that right off the bat."
Back then, a lot of people in Hollywood were impressed with Bruce. He was moving from hit show to hit show and he'd already proven his mettle as a supervising producer in the early years of "Survivor," the world's most popular reality show.
Of course, the situation Bruce now finds himself in is somewhat ironic given what he used to do for a living.
"This is a guy who creates drama for people for entertainment purposes," said Pat Fanning, a noted defense lawyer. "I wonder how he feels with all the cameras pointed at him instead of him being the one directing the cameras."
Bruce Beresford-Redman wasn't just surviving in Hollywood -- he was thriving. And at his side was then-girlfriend Monica Burgos, an alluring Brazilian national who owned a popular Los Angeles nightspot.
"She was gorgeous. She was this exotic, tall, beautiful creature with long at the time, very dark, curly hair. She was just spectacular and she had this accent that was like listening to honey through gauze. It was beautiful. It was mellifluous," said Bruce.
"She liked to entertain. She was a very good entertainer and she had a marvelous rapport with people. People were drawn to Monica. She had a charm about her," Bruce's mother, Juanita Beresford-Redman, told "48 Hours Mystery" correspondent Troy Roberts.
"So what were your impressions of Monica when you first met her?" Roberts asked.
"First impression, strikingly beautiful, very sweet. She was so delighted to meet us," Juanita replied. "I just thought, you know, 'She's a lovely girl.'"
Bruce and Monica married in 1999, and had two children: Camila, now 7, and Alec, now 5.
"In the beginning, it appeared they had a solid marriage?" Roberts asked Monica's sister, Jeane Burgos.
"I think Monica loved him very much...she felt strong about him. She fell in love for him and I think he fell in for her too 'cause Monica was his opposite," she said.
Burgos says her sister, Monica, was the flashy extrovert and Bruce was the quiet intellectual.
"She had life. She was a very self-confident person," Burgos said. "Bruce was a very well read person. He can be very eloquent...so I feel that was attractive to Monica."
"I went back to see her. The food was OK, but I went back to see her. And I spoke to her again and then got up enough courage to ask her on a date and we were together from that pint on," Bruce recalled.
They were a handsome couple and lived in a stunning $2 million home in Palo Verdes, California.
But today, a Mexican prison is home to Bruce Beresford-Redman. The television producer is under arrest and awaiting trial for a sinister crime. He's accused of killing his wife, Monica, and stuffing her naked body in a sewer.
Producers Josh Yager and Ana Real were able to meet with Beresford-Redman inside the prison. He wanted to talk on the record. The interview was recorded using a cell phone.
"This is the first time I've chosen to speak. ...everyone seems to have decided along time ago that I killed my wife. I didn't kill my wife, I really didn't," he said.
"I'm not the greatest guy in the world. But I'm also not a criminal. I've never been arrested in my life...until this, I've never been in jail. I've never been in trouble."
"Did you ever ask him the question directly: 'Were you involved in Monica's death?'" Roberts asked Juanita.
"No, I didn't feel I had to, but at one point, he did say to me, 'You do know I didn't do it, don't you?' And I said, 'Of course I do.' But I would never dream of asking him. I mean, he's not a violent man," she said of her son.
Bruce admits he was not the perfect husband. Monica's sister, Carla Burgos, saw that first hand when she met Joy Pierce, Bruce's go-to casting director.
"I went with him to a party of his office...it was a club...we got to the place...she jumped on his lap like here and here and I was like you know..." she said.
"You were stunned," Roberts noted.
"Yeah," she replied.
Carla Burgos says Monica began to suspect Joy Pierce was not just Bruce's casting director -- she was also his girlfriend.
"She found out he had given, like, presents to this woman and he used to work with her," she said. "...they were lovers for years, I guess."
Eventually, Monica confronted Bruce and the reality show producer found himself thrust into a real-life soap opera complete with confessional emails.
He wrote Monica: "Joy and I were lovers." "We first had sex in Detroit...since that time, we have had a sexual and emotional relationship."
And in a separate email to his girlfriend, Joy Pierce, Bruce promised "to get therapy for being a liar."
The emails drip with intimacy, including pet names. She's "Little Wing;" he's "Buckethead."
"It was their lives. They had to sort it out," said Juanita.
Distraught, Bruce even confided to his mother about the affair.
Asked if she encouraged her son to break off the affair, Juanita told Roberts, "I did. I said, 'You know, that's the only smart thing to do. You will hurt yourself. You will hurt Monica. ...I got the impression that he had really fallen in love and it was going to be very difficult for him to break it off."
Juanita said she felt quite badly for her daughter-in-law.
"She was hurt. Of course she was hurt...but she was as determined as Bruce not to do anything to hurt the children," she said. "I said to her at one point in one of these conversations, 'Do you still love Bruce?' and she said, 'I'm not sure, I think I do but I don't want a divorce...'"
Juanita encouraged Bruce and Monica to stay together and even proposed an unorthodox solution.
"I said, 'You have a huge house. Let him live in the guest quarters and when the children are around, everything would be normal,'" she said.
Emotions were pitched on all sides. Even Joy Pierce and Monica were emailing each other. Joy the girlfriend - without a hint of irony - told Monica the wife that Bruce "is not a man of his word."
By spring 2010, Monica had reached her breaking point. She fled the Palo Verdes home, drained their joint bank account and took the children to Hawaii.
"So she went to Hawaii to contemplate about her future?" Roberts asked Jeane Burgos.
"Yes," she replied.
"And when she returned, she decided that she wanted to try to save this marriage."
"Well, when she came back Bruce totally shifted...he start crying and really...creating this emotional -- situation around her that he never had done before," Jeane said. "...she start, like, kind of falling into it. 'Oh maybe he really regret, you know, everything that he did.'
"He start, you know, asking forgiveness," she continued. "'I just found out you are really the woman of my life...It's your birthday. You can chose to go wherever you wanna go.'"
Their choice was Cancun. Monica would give Bruce and the marriage one last chance. With their two young children in tow, the couple took off on a trip that would change the family forever.