Police free Honduran women being held for ransom by smugglers in Juarez

Immigration

EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – Authorities in Mexico say they rescued two Honduran women from a criminal gang that was holding them for ransom in Juarez.

The women, a mother and her daughter, had come to the border in hopes of crossing into the United States; they were taken to a house to wait but then their hosts became their captors, authorities said.

“They went into the house to wait to enter into the United States illegally. They were detained against their will and (their captors) made several calls asking their family members for money. To us, that means kidnapping,” Chihuahua Deputy Attorney General Jorge Nava said.

Police became aware of the situation – Nava didn’t say how – and began canvassing the house. On Wednesday, members of the state police’s anti-kidnapping unit stormed the residence, rescued the women and took three people into custody.

The Hondurans are in good health, Nava said. The detainees are one man and one women police suspect are part of a migrant smuggling group.

Tens of thousands of individuals and families from Central America and other places have arrived in Mexican border cities since late 2018, many of them with the intention of seeking asylum in the United States. The numbers diminished substantially, coinciding with the Trump administration’s policy of making petitioners wait in Mexico and persuading that country to stop migrant caravans at the border with Guatemala.

However, migrants continue to arrive and many place themselves in the hands of smugglers, say border officials who have busted several migrant stash houses in El Paso and in South Texas in recent months.

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