Purported good Samaritan kidnappers
Three Tijuana men have landed in jail on suspicion of kidnapping after they allegedly bound the hands and feet of a would-be patient and held him down in the back of a pickup en route to a drug rehabilitation center.
Police said they were alerted to the situation when they saw events unfolding via one of the city's many crime-monitoring cameras — in this instance, in the Colonia del Rio neighborhood in the eastern part of the city at around 11 a.m. on Sunday, April 14.
Dispatchers watching the video monitors alerted officers in the area that a man was apparently being held against his will in the back of a black Ford pickup. At the intersection of Alberto Limón Padilla Boulevard and Aztecas Avenue, patrol officers stopped a truck matching the description. In the bed of the pickup, according to a police statement, the officers found a man lying face up, bound by a nylon cord at his hands and feet, and prevented from standing up by two men pressing on his body.
When officers questioned the man being held down, he told them he was snatched from a street near his home by three men who refused to tell him who they were and where they were taking him, according to the police statement.
Arrested on suspicion of kidnapping were José Alberto Aceves Balderrama, 46, Alejandro Rodríguez Galindo, 23, and Alfonso Corona Cázares, 28.
"It appears that they are employees of a rehabilitation center called Unidos por la Esperanza, A.C. [‘united for hope’],” the police statement said. ("A.C." is a reference to the organization's nonprofit status.)
While the suspects had little to say to police, officers said they made the connection because each of the detained men carried papers identifying them as members of Unidos por la Esperanza.