Activist Who Vanished After Pleading for Help on Facebook Has Been Found Alive in Mexico
Hugo Castro has been found in Mexico (Facebook/Gabriela Cortes)
Stranded on the shoulder of a busy highway in a crime-ridden area of Mexico, Hugo Castro took to Facebook Live to broadcast a desperate call for help.
Castro, a U.S. citizen and migrant rights activist who has worked in San Diego, Tijuana and other border communities, said he had run out of Mexican pesos and was unable to pay for a taxi or bus with U.S. dollars. He claimed he was being followed by a criminal organization for the past several days, and he feared for his life. On Thursday evening, the group cornered him on the road to Puebla, Mexico, about 66 miles southeast of the capital.
“It’s like they’re hunting me,” Castro, 45, told those watching on Facebook Live, describing his location by pointing out the nearby gas station and metal arch. “Please, someone come here.”
There was no way of immediately verifying Castro’s claims. But after that 20-minute harrowing message, no one heard from Castro for days. His family had reported him missing a day earlier. The ensuing disappearance of Castro, a longtime volunteer with Border Angels, an immigrant rights advocacy group, prompted searches by authorities in the United States and Mexico, spurred weekend vigils in San Diego and heightened concerns about the growing number of people missing under suspicious circumstances in Mexico.
But on Tuesday, after nearly a week missing, Castro was reportedly located alive in Mexico.He was found on a street called Avenida San Rafael in Tlalnepantla de Baz, a city north of Mexico City, after the office of the special prosecutor for disappeared persons received an anonymous phone call describing his location. The attorney general’s office said it has since launched an investigation into “the illegal deprivation of freedom” of Castro, KPBS reported.
His condition is “delicate,” Gabriela “Gaba” Cortes, Castro’s partner, wrote on Facebook Tuesday night, adding that the authorities continue to investigate. Cortes is with Castro while he receives medical treatment.
Read the rest at The Washington Post
Related: Hugo Castro’s Colleague Shares Details on Circumstances Surrounding His Reappearance (Remezcla)
Related: Beaten San Diego Activist Is Recovering After Disappearing in Mexico (PRI's The World)
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