Two ‘migrant smugglers’ have been arrested for kidnapping a Honduran man in Texas and then mowing down his aunt with an SUV for failing to pay a $6,000 ransom
- Ricardo Mejia and Amy Regalado, both from Falfurrias, Texas, were arrested Friday morning for kidnapping a 21-year-old Honduran migrant man
- The couple have agreed to release the man to his aunt in Rosenberg’s Brazos city center on Thursday night in exchange for a $6,000 payment.
- The man’s aunt was hit by the alleged smuggler’s Cadillac Escalade after the woman failed to come up with the payment
- Mejia and Regalado were each charged with aggravated kidnapping and aggravated assault
- The man told authorities he had crossed over from Mexico to the United States a month ago and was then sold between migrant smuggling gangs.
Texas authorities have arrested two suspected people smugglers after they allegedly kidnapped a migrant from Honduras and then hit his aunt when she failed to pay a $6,000 ransom for his freedom.
Ricardo Mejia and Amy Regalado, both of Falfurrias, Texas, were arrested Friday by the Rosenberg police for their alleged role in the kidnapping of an unidentified 21-year-old Honduran man.
Police said the migrant crossed the US border before being abandoned in southern Texas, where he wandered for days before encountering a person at a gas station and asking for help.
The person contacted their relatives, who were allegedly involved in the people smuggling, and decided to take the Honduran migrant into their home. They contacted his relatives and came to a deal for his release in the Houston area.
Mejia and Regalado arranged for the exchange to take place Thursday in the Rosenberg city center parking lot of Brazos, police said.
Amy Regalado, of Falfurrias, Texas, was arrested Friday morning for kidnapping a 21-year-old Honduran migrant man. She received a call from a relative who was approached by the migrant man at a gas station asking for help after he was released by a smuggling ring. Regalado and her accomplice, Ricardo Mejia, agreed to hand the man over to his aunt Thursday night in exchange for $6,000, but the deal backfired when the woman didn’t come up with the money. While fleeing a shopping center parking lot, they beat the woman, but were caught about 90 minutes later. Regalado and her cohort have been charged with aggravated kidnapping and aggravated assault
Ricardo Mejia was reportedly part of a migrant smuggling network in Texas. He was arrested for the aggravated kidnapping and aggravated assault of a 21-year-old man from Honduras last Friday after a deal to release him for $6,000 to his family went awry.
However, the exchange derailed when his aunt failed to come up with the money.
The migrant smugglers quickly fled with the Honduran person in tow and fled his aunt – who was not named – in their Cadillac Escalade about 11:23 p.m.
The suspects fled on US Highway 59 and were later intercepted by the Victoria County Sheriff’s Deputies about 90 minutes later.
Mejia and Regalado were taken into custody and each charged with aggravated kidnapping and aggravated assault.
The Honduran migrant told authorities he crossed the border a month ago and was looking to reunite with his family in New York.
Mejia and Regalado arranged for the exchange to take place Thursday in the parking lot of Brazos city center in Rosenberg (pictured), police said.
Rosenberg Police Department investigators found that after he arrived in the United States, he was “eventually sold between groups of smugglers” as he was transferred from one storehouse to another.
The last smuggling ring to hold him captive decided to release him for fear of the local police presence in the area.
“Local law enforcement agencies have done an excellent job in ending a criminal episode that spanned international borders. It is shameful today, in a country at the forefront of the free world, that people are being bought and sold like animals,” Jarret Nethery, assistant chief of police at Rosenberg, said in a statement.
“The most important aspect of this tragedy is that this young man escaped, sought help and was returned to captivity. This is the definition of evil.’
DailyMail.com reached out to the Honduras Consul General in New York for comment.