IIMPACT Detectives dismantle two Phoenix drop houses in three weeks
Total of six coyotes arrested and 23 victims rescued
Tuesday, December 8, 2009 -
On December 4, 2009, IIMPACT investigators acting on a tip began efforts to locate a Mexican national that was being held against his will at a west valley drop house. The drop house was located on December 6th at
Inside the home, 8 undocumented aliens were located. The victims said armed guards ordered them to line up and hand over their valuables and money and told them to remove their socks and shoes. They told investigators the suspects would often point firearms at their heads as they spoke to family members while being extorted for money. Their captors threatened to find and kill them if they ever spoke to police. The suspects also took pictures of the victims. Investigators located two AK-47 rifles, four handguns and the cell phones used to make ransom demands. In the bedroom where the aliens were kept, the windows were fortified with plywood to stop the undocumented aliens from escaping.
Charges: Kidnapping, Extortion, Armed Robbery, Human Smuggling,
Misconduct Involving Weapons
On November 17, 2009, IIMPACT Investigators received information that an out-of-state relative had paid almost $3,000 to “coyotes’ to secure her relatives release from a west valley drop house. IIMPACT was able to locate the house at
Charges: Human Smuggling
IIMPACT (Illegal Immigration Prevention & Apprehension Co-op Team) is a multi-agency project managed by GIITEM of the Arizona Department of Public Safety that is designed to “deter, disrupt and dismantle violent criminal organizations profiting from human smuggling.” In most IIMPACT cases, crimes of kidnapping, extortion, assault and human smuggling are prevalent. IIMPACT is comprised of investigators from the Phoenix Police Department, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS).