Friday, June 13, 2008

15 Nabbed In Drop House Raid (KPHO-Phoenix, AZ)

15 Nabbed In Drop House Raid

POSTED: 7:55 am MST June 13, 2008

PHOENIX -- Fifteen people, including four suspected human smugglers, were taken into custody Thursday after authorities raided a west Valley home.

Phoenix police, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Department of Public Safety teamed up to raid the suspected drop house at 49th Avenue and Indian School Road.

Police said one of the men in the home contacted a group of human smugglers in Mexico on June 2 and paid them $1,500 to bring him to Phoenix.

The smugglers sold him to another group, which brought him and 10 other illegal immigrants to Phoenix and kept them in the west Valley drop house, police said.

On Tuesday, police said, the smugglers told the man to call his wife and tell her that he and the others were being held against their will and that she would have to pay an additional $3,500 for his release.

The man's wife contacted ICE instead.

Authorities raided the home around 6 p.m. Thursday and said they found the 11 immigrants and four suspected smugglers inside. The smugglers had locked the immigrants in a bedroom and taken their shoes to prevent them from escaping, according to police.

Authorities said they also found weapons inside the home, including a shotgun and a handgun.
The 11 immigrants were turned over to ICE to be returned to Mexico.

The suspected smugglers were arrested on charges of kidnapping, extortion and misconduct involving weapons.

No comments: