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Teen Accused of Selling 15-Year-Old to 2 MenPosted: Updated:
EDINBURG – A Rio Grande Valley 17-year-old female is accused of selling a 15-year-old girl to two men.
The teenager was arrested for the alleged sex trafficking crime. Investigators said the two men sexually assaulted the 15-year-old.
The 17-year-old remains in the Hidalgo County jail. She was arrested on Friday and charged with engaging in organized criminal activity and trafficking of a child.
The female suspect is identified as Briseyda Bivian Flores of Alton. Hidalgo County Sheriff’s investigators said she’s accused of luring the teen from her home in Zapata County.
The relationship of the two is not known, but Flores reportedly took the victim and sold her to the two men for an undisclosed amount of money.
The suspects allegedly sexually assaulted her while she was in their custody. They were holding her for ransom.
“It’s very serious because these people prey on juveniles and they sell them for money. They can be illegals, they can be U.S. citizens. It’s just a need to keep a tab on our children at all times because they’re the ones that are being victims,” Hidalgo County Sheriff’s spokesperson Celina Flores said.
Sheriff’s officials offered some advice to parents.
“It’s very disturbing because things like this, you hear about it in other third world countries and it’s happening here, in our backyard. So it is a great danger to anybody that has kids, to keep a close eye on their children, to have a great relationship with them, to make sure that they always know what they’re doing, because unfortunately, sometimes things like this happen,” Flores said.
Sheriff’s deputies identified Flores after the arrest of one of the male suspects. Ricardo Mata Jr. was picked up last week during a traffic stop and charged with aggravated kidnapping.
He led investigators to the victim who was being held in a location in Mission.
The second suspect, Erick Martinez Lopez, wasn’t there when law enforcement showed up.
Anyone with information on Lopez’s whereabouts is asked to contact the sheriff’s office at (956) 668-8477.
The victim was checked out at a local hospital and released to the custody of her parents.