An Arizona man, who had allegedly helped smuggle a woman from that border state to her family in Mountain View—and then refused to let her go—was nabbed in San Jose by the Mountain View Police Department and California Highway Patrol about 15 minutes after he kidnapped her, the police reported today.
The suspect, Aparicio Nicandro, a 26-year-old from Alabaster, AZ, arrived in Mountain View Sunday afternoon with the 32-year-old woman, according MVPD spokeswoman Liz Wylie. Upon arrival, he allegedly demanded an extra $800 to release the woman.
"The family could not pay the extra $800 he demanded," Wylie said, and so Nicandro "kidnapped the victim and drove off at a high rate of speed—driving over the sidewalk to get around other drivers."
The family called 911 and provided police with a description of the vehicle—a blue Nissan Altima with Arizona plates, she said.
An officer found the sedan traveling southbound on Highway 101 and followed it, without activating any lights or siren until other officers caught up.
The suspect got off the highway at the Trimble Road exit. The MVPD and CHP then conducted a high-risk car stop on Trimble Road near the off ramp.
Nicandro was taken into custody without further incident, and the victim was unharmed and returned to the family. She will apply for a visa to allow her to stay in this county, Wylie said.
The suspect was arrested for kidnapping and booked into the county jail. Immigration and Customs Enforcement placed a “hold” on him, which means he won't be eligible for bail until an investigation has been completed.
"We do not know exactly what would have happened to the victim had we not found the car," Wylie said, adding that in other cases like these, victims have been dumped in remote locations, taken back to where they were being housed on this side of the Mexican border (usually deplorable conditions) or killed.
According to the MVPD, the victim, originally from Mexico, had lived in Oregon illegally. She returned to Mexico recently to visit her parents and could not get back into the U.S. Working with her family in Mountain View, a smuggler was hired to take her back across the border and then to Mountain View. A sum of $3,300 was wired to a “coyote”—the Spanish term for an immigrant smuggler. Nicandro then transferred her to Mountain View.
"I am not aware of any other cases like this in the eight years I’ve worked here," Wylie said. "But these types of cases often go unreported due to fears from the families who are often here illegally. We don’t know how often this type of thing actually occurs."