Lake County deportee kidnapped and held in Mexico?

Painesville mother set for deportation to Mexico with many questions about her fate

PAINESVILLE - Beatriz Castilla, of Painesville, is set to be deported to Mexico Tuesday.

The mother of 4 and her family are particularly concerned about another Painesville man who was reportedly kidnapped and held for ransom as soon as he arrived back in Mexico.

Maria Gomez of Painesville doesn't want to give her husband’s name, but she wants you to know in June he was in a car accident.

Weeks later his attorney says he was deported to Mexico.

"He had been previously deported but he re-entered. He has no criminal history, has family in the U-S and is a hard working member of society," says Gomez family attorney, Elizabeth Ford.

Through a translator, Gomez told WKYC Channel 3 News that her husband was kidnapped and held for ransom this time when he was deported.

She sent $2,000. The people holding her husband for ransom wanted more.

"They weren’t going to let him go and if she didn't send the money they were asking for she was never going to see him again. She says they were going to kill him and send him in pieces," said Gomez through her translator.

Margaret Wong and Associates Immigration attorney Richard Drucker says, "It did not surprise me at all. We’ve been hearing about this for a long time."

Drucker explains Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, typically will fly Mexican deportees like Gomez's husband to the border areas, then they are driven into Mexico to immigration agents.

"You're sending those people to a place where the police and government are corrupted by the cartel. Not only are they involved in drug trafficking, but extortion as well. And these Mexican nationals being deported are viewed as targets," said Drucker.

Gomez, through the translator said, “She doesn’t understand why they just dump them off there like it's nothing. Knowing that is one of the worst places to be alone. It’s the most dangerous, with the most deaths and most kidnappings."

"They are prime targets for extortion. They get information about families in the U-S and Mexico and extort money," says Drucker.

"The U.S. State Department even recommends U.S. citizens avoid nonessential travel to Nuevo Laredo, yet we deport people there,” sys Ford.

Maria Gomez's husband was finally released, but she says “My husband is still very afraid because they are watching him. Every day she is thinking about this, still in shock about what is happening."

© 2017 WKYC-TV


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