Houston police arrest 5 in connection with human smuggling charges involving 18 people

Credit: Elizabeth Conley/Houston Chronicle/AP

Credit: Elizabeth Conley/Houston Chronicle/AP

Houston authorities arrested and charged five people who allegedly kidnapped, smuggled and sexually assaulted 18 people, KTRK reported.

Houston authorities arrested and charged five people who allegedly kidnapped, smuggled and sexually assaulted 18 people, KTRK reported.

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At a news conference Friday, Houston Police Department Chief Art Acevedo said the victims included 16 men and two women, according to the Houston Chronicle. Acevedo said the victims were held hostage in a northwest Houston home, adding the women were assaulted over a 25-day period, according to KPRC

The men arrested were identified as Jose Silvestre Chavarrieta-Gusman, 18, Fredy Moreno-Gil, 26, Gabriel Salazar-Bautista, 35, Jose Manuel Aviles-Diaz, 26, and Moris Gudiel Campos-Gomez, 39. They are charged with engaging in organized criminal activity by kidnapping, the Chronicle reported.

Three of the five men also were charged with sexual assault, Acevedo said at the news conference.

Houston police were contacted June 5 by a family who said their relative was being held for ransom, KTRK reported. Police worked with detectives with the homicide division, human trafficking unit and the criminal intelligence division to locate and rescue the victims, the television station reported.

Detectives recovered four guns, more than $10,000 and 19 grams of cocaine from the house, the Chronicle reported.

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