A federal grand jury has indicted a Mexican man that Border Patrol says ran a stash house where 80 people, including women and children, were threatened with violence and rarely provided food.
Madizon Alonso-Salgado, born in 1989, is charged with four counts of bringing in and harboring people in the country illegally.
He was indicted Wednesday.
Border Patrol initially arrested Alonso-Salgado on April 26 after investigating a tip that a man with blond hair was the caretaker of a stash house at 1819 W. 26th St. in Mission, according to a criminal complaint.
While conducting surveillance, agents watched a tan Chevrolet Malibu arrive and leave the residence several times and eventually followed it to a barber shop and saw two people exit the vehicle and enter the location before leaving a short time later, authorities say.
One of those people — Alonso-Salgado — matched the caretaker’s description, and agents approached the pair and questioned them about their immigration status.
Alonso-Salgado, who was the driver, and the passenger were both in the country illegally, according to Border Patrol.
The agents say they questioned them about smuggling and Alonso-Salgado said there was only one person in the Mission house, but the passenger said there were more than 40, according to the complaint.
Border Patrol says Alonso-Salgado provided written and verbal consent to search the residence and handed over a key.
Agents, along with Mission police and the sheriff’s office, approached the residence and saw multiple people running around inside, authorities say.
There were 79 people inside the house, including four unaccompanied minors. Counting the passenger, who also stayed at the house, that comes to a total of 80 people.
Alonso-Salgado spoke to agents and told a familiar story.
He paid $7,000 to be smuggled sometime in early March and later agreed to help a caretaker in exchange for living in another house with better accommodations, according to the complaint.
Border Patrol says he also admitted to transporting people from a grocery store parking lot to the house five times, earning $500 each time.
Alonso-Salgado, however, claimed he wasn’t in charge of the house though he provided water daily.
“Alonso claimed during the month he was involved with the house, approximately two hundred (200) people have moved through the house,” the complaint stated.
One of the people Border Patrol interviewed, a citizen of El Salvador, told agents conditions in the house were terrible and that Alonso-Salgado constantly threatened him and others in the house, according to the complaint.
“(He) added the condition of the house was terrible, mainly citing the filthy restroom and no space to lie and sleep. (He) also said the caretaker constantly threatened physical violence, hardly ever provided food, and commanded people in the house to follow his direction,” the complaint stated.
He will remain jailed pending his trial as he has an immigration hold, records show.