17 | NOV | 2019
Escorts murders linked to human trafficking mafias
Colombian and Venezuelan traffickers force young women into prostitution - Photo: Hannibal Hanschke/REUTERS

Escorts murders linked to human trafficking mafias

22/08/2019
14:05
Mexico City
David Fuentes & Kevin Ruiz
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In the first semester of 2019, there have been four femicides of South American escorts and models, revealing conflicts between Colombian and Venezuelan traffickers in Mexico

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The four femicides of South American escorts and models registered during the first semester of the year – the last of them was the Colombian Laura Cristiana – revealed a dispute among Venezuelan and Colombian traffickers in Mexico.

These groups appeared after the arrest of Ignacio Santoyo “El Sony,” founder of the website ZonaDivas, where some of the women were forced into prostitution.

As revealed by friends of the victims, who are also escorts, who detailed that the “business” model is still the same; they recruit young women mainly in Venezuela, taking advantage of the situation in that country, and bring them to Mexico via Cancún to distribute them in the North and Center of the country.

They also offer their services in websites and social networks under the concept of “independent,” but that is not true, for traffickers manage their Twitter accounts.

The testimonies, reinforced by the investigation of federal and local authorities, report that traffickers force women to work for those who make them enter the country illegally; however, “the competition” makes them attractive offers to make them work with them, which creates conflicts.

Those women who refuse, according to the testimonies, are intimidated and threatened, just as those who give the modus operandi away to authorities, up to the point of murdering them.

“The problem is that they [human traffickers] still see us as goods. Colombians want you to work for them, and Venezuelans too. Neither cares whether we want to or not, or if we’re tired of that life.”
 

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“This year, first, they killed two Venezuelan women that did not want to change sides and also two Colombians. They keep killing us and the worst is that no authority helps us,” commented a Colombian escort who asked to remain anonymous for safety.

Advances. Regarding the investigation of the murder of Laura Cristina, local police revealed it has videos that show a suspect that entered the complex Grand Tower in the Miguel Hidalgo borough.

In this regard, the secretary of Public Security (SSC), Jesús Orta Martínez, said that these images are part of the evidence found in the home of the woman who came from Ibague, Colombia.

“There is some evidence, there are traces in the blood and other evidence that the Attorney General is following; we have yet to identify the perpetrator,” he said.

According to the information registered in the investigation file, Laura had been for nearly two years in Mexico City and was an escort on a website.

The day before the finding of her body, as told by the domestic worker, three men arrived at the apartment at different hours, and when she finished her day, at 17:00, Laura sat down to watch the T.V.

The owner of the apartment went too and said that he had communication with the victim the day before her murder, and she told him that she could not pay the rent due to economic reasons.

The building where the victim was found has four towers of 23 floors, four closed-circuit cameras in the lobby area, one in the waiting room of the first level, and eight elements of private security of the company Global Risk Prevention.
 

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