Couple lured girl, 12, from Mexico to U.S. with promise of better life but beat her and used her as a sex slave
By Rachel Quigley
December 4, 2012
A couple have been charged with dozens of counts of sexual abuse against a 12-year-old girl who prosecutors say they lured from Mexico to the U.S. promising a better life.
Inez Martinez Garcia, 43, and her 45-year-old husband Marcial Garcia Hernandez were each charged on Monday with 26 counts of aggravated sexual abuse, and had their bail set at $2 million apiece.
Inez Martinez Garcia
Marcial Garcia Hernandez
The Sheriff's Department says the arrest followed a two-and-a-half-year investigation after the victim, now an adult, finally came forward.
The girl, who has not been named, was smuggled across the border and used as a slave for both sex and labor, was forced to care for the couple's children and was regularly beaten.
She was forced to have sex with Hernandez and sold to other men for that purpose.
Law enforcement sources have said the victim was a relative of the couple, and that the couple had promised her parents she would have a better life and education in America, according to U.T. San Diego.
Her ordeal ended after she was beaten so badly, authorities intervened and returned her to Mexico.
The couple appeared in court but did not enter pleas, saying they were seeking private counsel. An arraignment was scheduled for December 18.
They each face a sentence of 390 years to life if convicted of all of the charges.
The alleged abuse took place from June 2001 to June 2002.
The couple became legal residents of the U.S. after they emigrated from Mexico but required interpreters in court who could speak Zapotec, an indigenous language spoken in Oaxaca, in southern Mexico.
Re: Couple lured girl, 12, from Mexico to U.S. with promise of better life but beat her and used her as a sex slave
It is beyond terrible and bothers me that it is overshadowed by anything.
It is time, at some point (and I'd be fine with it being now), that we stop saying this has been going on forever, because than just makes it keep going on forever. And it is so far from okay. Making an example of these offenders-so people really take notice that human sex slave traffiking from Mex. to the US is punishable by death. I'm honestly fine with that and I bet the 12 year and her relatives would be fine with it also.