JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (AP) — A prosecutor offered a deal Thursday to Mexican authorities and a Marine wanted in the killing a 20-year-old pregnant colleague: If he is arrested in Mexico, he won't face lethal injection in North Carolina.

Investigators believe Cpl. Cesar Laurean has fled to his native Mexico, which refuses to send anyone back to the United States unless provided assurances they won't face the death penalty.

"The choices presented to me were either a possible life without parole sentence or the defendant living in Mexico the rest of his life and never brought to trial," Onslow County District Attorney Dewey Hudson said in announcing an indictment charging Laurean, 21, with first-degree murder.

The remains of Lance Cpl. Maria Lauterbach, 20, were found with those of her fetus earlier this month in a fire pit in Laurean's back yard.