Skip to main content

73 rescued from Mexican house

By Mariano Castillo, CNN
updated 12:48 PM EDT, Tue October 1, 2013
(File photo) Some of the victims had been kidnapped from buses or bus terminals while traveling through Mexico.
(File photo) Some of the victims had been kidnapped from buses or bus terminals while traveling through Mexico.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Police rescue 73 people from a house in northern Mexico
  • About half of the victims are Central American
  • They had been snatched from buses or bus stations

(CNN) -- The trek for those traveling through northern Mexico remains dangerous: police rescued 73 people who were being held hostage in the border city of Reynosa.

The victims had been kidnapped from buses or bus terminals, and about half were Central Americans, police said. It is likely, though police did not say, that a majority of the victims were migrants on their way north to the United States.

Read more: The new Mexico, beyond stereotypes

Some of the kidnap victims were held for as long as four months, Mexico's National Security Commission said in a statement.

Federal police on patrol Monday in Reynosa followed a car after its occupants tried to avoid them, the commission said. When the two men in the car pulled up to a house, so did the police.

'Deportation a humanitarian crisis'
Mexican train derailment kills 5

The police approached the house "from where they could hear cries for help," the commission said.

Inside the house, police found 73 hostages: 37 Mexicans, 19 Hondurans, 14 Guatemalans, and three Salvadorans, it said.

Six minors were among those rescued, the commission said.

The Latino footprint in America: 500 years strong

The victims told police that some had been held between four days and four months. The alleged kidnappers made phone calls to the victims' families, demanding ransom payments in exchange for their release, the commission said.

Some of the people rescued said they were assaulted or raped, it said.

Police arrested the two men in the car who arrived at the house, and a third man who they allege worked as a lookout.

Authorities have discovered at least three mass kidnapping operations in and around Reynosa this year. In July, Mexican authorities rescued 81 migrants they said were held captive in Reynosa.

And in June, authorities said that in a small town nearby they rescued 165 migrants who were kidnapped as they tried to cross into the United States.

The dangers are not limited to the north of the country.

In July, authorities in southern state of Chiapas rescued 94 migrants who were crammed into the back of a hauling truck in "subhuman conditions."

They showed symptoms of asphyxiation and serious lesions on their hands and feet when they were rescued.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 10:21 AM EST, Thu November 27, 2014
The first human trial of an experimental Ebola vaccine has produced promising results, U.S. scientists said.
updated 9:15 AM EST, Thu November 27, 2014
Darren Wilson, the police officer who fatally shot unarmed black teen in August abandoned home after address made public.
updated 5:36 PM EST, Tue November 25, 2014
HBO -- backing a documentary based on "Going Clear," a book about Scientology and Hollywood -- isn't taking any chances with legal side.
updated 2:35 PM EST, Wed November 26, 2014
Grandmaster Nguyen Van Chieu has devoted his adult life to spreading the word about Vietnames martial art, Vovinam.
updated 6:36 AM EST, Thu November 27, 2014
England cricketer Nick Compton shares insight into "drive and courage" it takes to face fears as top batsman.
updated 7:59 PM EST, Wed November 26, 2014
Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson says he was just doing his "job right" when he shot and killed black teenager Michael Brown.
updated 8:18 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
The interior of the Formosa Boulevard Mass Rapid Transit Station in Kaohsiung, in southern Taiwan.
Stunning stations where your first priority won't be finding the nearest exit.
updated 6:18 PM EST, Tue November 25, 2014
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says women's "nature is different," sparking fury.
updated 5:43 AM EST, Mon November 24, 2014
A 30-year-old woman has been charged with attempting to kill a baby police say spent five days down a drain before being discovered by cyclists.
updated 8:21 PM EST, Thu November 20, 2014
If it wasn't for a comic's skit, Bill Cosby would still be America's favorite father, says expert.
updated 7:51 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
Where do hip young things hang out in Taiwan?
updated 10:50 AM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
Obama orders the most sweeping overhaul of U.S. immigration in decades, prioritizing the deportation of "felons, not families."
updated 4:06 PM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
Fighters loyal to ISIS are now in control of Derna, a city on Libya's Mediterranean coast.
updated 6:19 PM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
China and likely other countries have the capacity to shut down the U.S. power grid, says the NSA.
updated 2:45 PM EST, Wed November 19, 2014
The founder of a U.S. nonprofit that works with returning soldiers is named CNN's Hero of the Year.
updated 12:03 PM EST, Thu November 27, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT