Human smugglers kidnap man to make up for escapee

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PHOENIX - A Phoenix man was released by drug smugglers after being kidnapped while getting off a city bus.

IIMPACT detectives was notified by Phoenix Police that the victim was forced into a van by human smugglers in the area of 32 St. and Roosevelt and taken to a drop house at 1008 N. 27th Avenue where he was kept for four days.

The victim's family was asked to pay $2,800 in ransom so that the smugglers did not have to explain to their bosses that one of the men smuggled into the country had escaped the drop house.

The victim led police to the drop house where one alleged human smuggler was arrested after trying to flee the drop house in a truck and later identified by the victim.

At about 9:30 p.m. officers surrounded the residence and detained the other human smugglers and 10 undocumented immigrants.

The man kidnapped and held for ransom is also an undocumented immigrant but has lived in Phoenix most of his life.

The two men taken into custody are 26-year-old Jose Angel Lopez-Gutierrez and 24-year-old Ariel Rodriguez-Duarte. Both are from Mexico. They face charges of kidnapping, extortion, armed robbery, human smuggling and misconduct involving weapons.

The undocumented immigrants were turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).