Three men from Brownsville, Brooklyn are now facing charges from a New Jersey federal court after they reportedly kidnapped, tortured, and held a teen for ransom, as reported by New York Daily News.
The Kidnapping Suspects & Their Charges
According to the outlet, the kidnapping suspects include 27-year-old Aleman Fernandez, 37-year-old Dennis Reyes Mora, and 26-year-old Alexander Cruz. The men are being held without bail and attended a brief arraignment in Newark Federal Court on Tuesday.
Each suspect faces a charge of one count of conspiracy to commit kidnapping. If convicted, each man could face a sentence of up to life in prison.
All three men are said to be residents of Brownsville, Brooklyn.
The Motive Behind The Alleged Kidnapping
The kidnapping victim’s identity has not been revealed, however, ABC7 New York has detailed that he is 18 years old.
According to New York Daily News, the teenager invited the men to his Hackensack, New Jersey home around 11 p.m. on March 17. He reportedly intended to purchase drugs from the men.
After the group worked out a deal for the purchase, the victim led the men to a parking lot in Newark, Delaware. According to the outlet, this was where “the money was supposed to be exchanged.” However, the deal “fell through.”
The suspects then grabbed the man and threatened to stab him. From there, they bound his hands with duct tape and threw him into the backseat of a car. As they did this, the suspects reportedly stabbed the man in the legs.
The Events That Reportedly Followed The Teenager’s Abduction
The suspects then brought the victim to a basement on Rockaway Avenue in Queens, New York. According to the outlet, the suspects tied him to a chair and beat and stabbed him. In addition, they also “raked a knife across his neck” and “held a gasoline-soaked rag against his eyes.”
Furthermore, the kidnappers also tortured the victim by burning him with cigarettes and threatening him with a gun.
According to New Jersey U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger, the victim recalled that one of the suspects, Aleman Fernandez, laughed every time he was tortured.
Ultimately, the suspects held the victim in the Queens basement for four days.
The Teenager’s Release & The Suspects’ Capture
According to New York Daily News, the suspects reached out victim’s parents and initially demanded $45,000 for the teenager’s ransom. The suspects then increased the figure to $60,000.
The teenager’s family, who was secretly working with law enforcement, offered the suspects $20,000.
On March 21, the suspects ordered the victim’s mother to drop off the money near Jamaica Avenue and Warwick Street in Cypress Hills, Brooklyn, at 11 p.m. March 21.
The teenager was then set free on the Jackie Robinson Parkway.
Furthermore, police authorities were able to track the suspect’s location through data from the victim’s phone. Investigators also followed a “dark-colored SUV” that was used in the pick-up of the ransom money.
Ultimately, investigators traced the suspects back to the Rockaway Ave. address where they also found the ransom money. As well as the victim’s blood.