Mexican kidnap victim establishes a new life in El Paso

borderzine

By Victoria A. Perez
Borderzine

EL PASO – Sitting on the cold hard cement the man was able to remove part of his blindfold and focusing his sight, the dim light revealed a small dirty room covered in blood.

Alejandro Hernandez Pacheco, 42, had been kidnapped in Torreon, Mexico, and one of the few who survived to tell the story.

He worked as a cameraman for the television station, Televisa, in Torreon. On July 26, 2010 during a regular day of work, Pacheco was sent to cover a news story about killings connected to a prison in his city.

Hernandez and two fellow reporters were sent to the prison in Gomez Palacio, Durango, were several murders of guards had taken place that same month.

“As we were going out of the prison, after getting interviews and video we were aggressively dragged by a group of five people in to a car, they had guns,” Hernandez said.

That’s when his nightmare began.

For five days the three reporters were kept captive in an isolated security house where they were starved, beaten and tortured both physically and mentally.

“The walls had bloody hand prints all over, there were strands of hair and some dental parts too,” Hernandez said, describing the room they were kept in.

He said that sometimes he heard the kidnappers talking about plans to kill them, but in a strange turn of events the kidnappers freed Hernandez and the other prisoners on the morning of July 31.

“They got us out of the car and told us to run and not look back, but we couldn’t – we were very weak,” Hernandez said.

At around 5 a.m. or 6 a.m. the kidnappers took Hernandez and the other cameraman to a secluded colonia in Gomez Palacio and freed them. As they tried to run towards freedom a group of armed policemen were already waiting for them not far from where they were left.

Mexican authorities took Hernandez and the other two reporters to Mexico City where he was reunited with his family. On their way to Mexico City the reporters thought they were meeting President Felipe Calderon. Instead the two beaten and exhausted man were thrown in a room full of national and international media.

Hernandez later found out…

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