SUNLAND PARK, N.M. – Authorities from the United States and Mexico are investigating after a 17-year-old from Guatemala and his father say they were held against their will in a house in Mexico as part of a human trafficking operation.
The teenager, after being apprehended by U.S. Border Patrol agents near Mount Cristo Rey in Sunland Park, told agents he was able to escape the house and run north across the international border, the Las Cruces Sun-News reported on Tuesday.
The teen’s father later was apprehended by agents near where his son had been encountered, according to a release from the Border Patrol.
After the man provided the agents with his son’s name, the agents realized that he was the father of the teen.
The father and son were reunited at the Santa Teresa Border Patrol Station.
An investigation uncovered the location of the stash house where the two males say they were held and extorted for money in Colonia Rancho Anapra south of Sunland Park, according to the Border Patrol.
Chihuahua State Police last week searched the property and found a person locked in the house and unable to leave, the release said. The stash house had several mattresses strewn about, indicating many people had been staying there, the Border Patrol said.