Immigration Enforcement

Kidnapping of illegal immigrants on the rise

Kidnapping of illegal immigrants on the rise

Lindsey Collom
The Arizona Republic
Nov. 29, 2007 12:00 AM

They are kidnapped at gunpoint, whisked away, held for ransom, sometimes tortured. Sometimes, they are sent home. Sometimes, they end up dead.

They are involved in human and drug trafficking; many are illegal immigrants. They are kidnapping victims, and police say their numbers are on the rise.

Kidnappings have long been an issue among illegal immigrants, where predators know victims are less likely to turn to law enforcement. But authorities say the rate of such crime has reached a new high. The violence rarely touches legitimate businesses and citizens, police say, but it’s happening close to home.

“What you have are people who are heavily armed, motivated, very violent, who are in the community that are torturing people, killing people,” said Sgt. Joel Tranter, a Phoenix police spokesman. “They’re driving the same streets as everybody else. They’re in that house that’s quiet, and you see people come and go a little bit. Imagine if that’s the house next to yours.”

Phoenix police now investigate one to three new cases each week, but officials believe the crimes are vastly underreported because victims are hesitant to come forward, and even when they are, many are too scared to help prosecute. More..

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December 4, 2007 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , ,

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