Two San Jose residents and three others from Gilroy were arrested Friday in connection with the rape and kidnapping of a woman they allegedly tried to force into prostitution in Riverside County in Southern California, authorities said.
The suspects were arrested in Moreno Valley on suspicion of human trafficking, abduction for prostitution, false imprisonment, kidnapping for sexual assault and attempted pimping and pandering, according to the Riverside County Sheriff's Department.
Ibrahim Binhajjyahyaabdulmalik, 25, and Ana Ceja, 20, of San Jose, and Gilroy residents Khalid Binhajjyahyaabdulmalik, 23, Abubakr Horrington, 32, and Jerry Landers, 21, were arrested after the 18-year-old victim freed herself and contacted Moreno Valley police, sheriff's deputies said.
The sheriff's department is investigating whether the suspects had been answering sex-for-hire postings on Craigslist and elsewhere in order to abduct people to force them into prostitution, Riverside County sheriff's Deputy Alberto Martinez said.
At about 4:45 p.m. Friday, Moreno Valley police responded to a report about a disturbance at a hotel in the city, deputies said.
The woman said she had been kidnapped in Compton in Los Angeles County on Thursday by four men and a woman at the point of a black semi-automatic handgun, deputies said.
The victim directed police to the suspects' location at the hotel and as officers approached, the suspects tried to drive away in a car but were stopped without incident, deputies said.
Moreno Valley police then contacted the sheriff's department's Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force, which took over the investigation, deputies said.
The woman told deputies that after the kidnapping, two of the five suspects sexually assaulted her at an undisclosed location.
They then told her she would be forced to have sex for money, deputies said.
The suspects rented a room at the hotel in Moreno Valley where they allegedly intended to force her to commit prostitution, deputies said.
When the victim noticed that the suspects were distracted, she escaped and notified police, according to the sheriff's office.