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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Texas

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Alleged Hostage Takers Ordered Detained

An Indictment Is A Formal Accusation Of Criminal Conduct, Not Evidence.

McALLEN, Texas - Miguel Angel Navarro, 35, of Hidalgo, and Onan Herrera-Sanchez, 24, of Honduras, have been ordered detained pending trial on charges of conspiracy and hostage taking, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today.

Navarro and Herrera-Sanchez appeared in court for an arraignment and detention hearing just a short time ago before U.S. Magistrate Judge Dorina Ramos, at which time she ordered them held without bond pending further criminal proceedings. A third defendant, Milton Leonel Trevino, 20, of Pharr, is also charged with the same offenses and was previously ordered detained.

All three men were charged in a two-count indictment in April 2013 with hostage taking and conspiracy to commit hostage taking. The indictment alleges they knowingly and intentionally conspired and agreed with each other to seize or detain and threaten to kill, injure or continue to detain another person in order to compel a third person to pay a sum of money as an explicit or implicit condition for the release of the person detained.

According to a federal complaint filed in March 2013, a female victim was kidnapped from a UT-Pan American University parking lot at approximately 7:15 p.m. on Sept. 25, 2012. She was allegedly forced into a vehicle by Herrera-Sanchez. Navarro was driving and Trevino was a passenger, according to the complaint. The victim was allegedly taken and held at Trevino’s home.

That evening, the victim’s father received a phone call demanding a ransom in exchange for his daughter’s release. He was allegedly told he had until Sept. 27, 2012, to deliver $100,000 to a location in Penitas. During a subsequent call, the victim’s father was told his daughter would be killed if they did not “get rid of” the police. The complaint alleges that on Sept. 26, 2012, at approximately 7:30 p.m., Trevino called the victim’s father and told him that he could pick her up at a residence in Pharr. She was released approximately an hour later.  

Each man faces up to life in prison and a possible $250,000 fine on each count, upon conviction.

The charges resulting in an indictment were the result of a joint investigation by the FBI and the University of Texas-Pan American Police Department with assistance from other law enforcement agencies.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Linda Requénez.

A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.

Updated April 30, 2015