This week, two males, one from Arizona, were arrested in Kansas on suspicion of trafficking a dozen individuals from Arizona to an unknown location.
On Thursday and Friday, the arrests took place in Wallace and Hamilton counties, respectively.
A 51-year-old male from Mesa, Arizona named Antonio Castro Tienda was arrested in Syracuse, Kansas. In their investigation, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office discovered that Castro was involved with a human trafficking organization in the Phoenix area.
This first arrest was made on Thursday in Wallace County, a county in northwest Kansas that borders Colorado. According to the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, the Wallace County Sheriff’s Office stopped a vehicle and apprehended the driver, who was suspected of being involved in human trafficking. The driver’s identity was not disclosed.
According to the HCSO, he was transporting 12 individuals in a van from Arizona to an unknown location.
The 12 victims were relocated to a hotel in Syracuse, Kansas, according to the Hamilton County sheriff’s office, but no reason was given for their relocation to a southern county.
On Friday at 6:11 a.m., HCSO received a 911 call stating that a man was at the hotel attempting to abduct the victims. When law enforcement officers arrived at the hotel, the suspect had fled in a maroon van.
Three hours later, the van was located, and the man was identified as Castro after being apprehended in a nearby restaurant.
The Hamilton sheriff’s office discovered through further investigation that Castro was affiliated with a Phoenix-based human Trafficking organization. No information regarding this connection was disclosed.
The Sheriff’s Office of Wallace County did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Saturday evening, the investigation was still in progress.
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