In acts of desperation, some people choose to enter the United States through illegal means. One such way is to hire a smuggler to assist in entering the country, but this course of action may not always go as planned. In Texas, it is not uncommon for smugglers to hold people ransom until their families are able to pay additional funds for their release. Recently, five men were arrested on a felony charge for holding over 100 people hostage.
Apparently, 115 people were held as hostages in Texas by only five men. The minuscule house – – which boasts a square footage of only around 1,300 square feet – – is thought to be a “stash house.” This is generally a house or a place where people who have been illegally brought into America are held until a ransom is paid.
The hostages were reportedly wearing no shoes and had only a little clothing on, so as to discourage any attempts at escape. Guns were also used to keep the hostages in the house, and at times physical violence and inappropriate touching was also reported to have occurred. The house was also in poor condition, had only a single toilet for all of the hostages to use and had its windows boarded up.
The raid on this Texas stash house was apparently the largest that the city had seen in quite some time. All five men who acted as the captors were arrested and charged for holding hostages as well as committing violent acts with a firearm. While these charges are quite significant, reviewing applicable state and federal laws as they relate to a felony charge can help ensure that the accused individuals prepare for trial, along with a defense team that has their best interests in mind and can help to advise them regarding their next best step.
Source: The Guardian, “Five men charged with hostage-taking after 115 people found in Texas house“, , March 25, 2014