HPD: Several immigrants removed from home in southeast Houston; missing teen found safe

Houston police say the teen was abducted by human smugglers
November 16, 2013 9:40:57 PM PST
A teenage boy whose parents say he was abducted by human smugglers has been found safe.

That news came late Saturday night, several hours after investigators were called to a home in the 7300 block of Ashburn near Prentiss as part of their investigation into that abduction. What they found was a suspected stash house holding nearly a dozen immigrants.

One by one, with their hands up, police detained and escorted the 10 undocumented immigrants, reported to be from Honduras, out of the house. They told police that men were keeping them hostage inside.

Guns were also found inside the house, police said. Investigators added that the immigrants were living in decent conditions.

"They say that the guards that have weapons on them were holding them against their will at this house, left just as the police were barely pulling up," Mark Holbrook with the Houston Police Department said.

Officers ordered the men out with their guns drawn. Each one was handcuffed and told to sit on the street as investigators searched the property.

What led investigators to this home was the 16-year-old boy. Police believe he was being held by human smugglers, or coyotes. At this point, we don't know where he was found or if his alleged abductors were taken into custody.

According to Houston police, a man drove down from Georgia to pick up his son from coyotes who had him. When he met two men at a taqueria on Broadway at Manchester, the coyotes apparently wanted an extra $2,800.

Police said the father couldn't come up with the cash. The coyotes threatened him with a pistol before speeding away with his son.

The father was reportedly able to get a license plate number on the vehicle they fled in, leading police to the home on Ashburn.

All of the Honduran immigrants were taken away by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers.

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