kidnapping Scandal rocks popular tourist destination



MEXICO CITY (AP) — A scandal involving the abduction and exploitation of young children in a colonial Mexican city popular with tourists widened Wednesday when prosecutors released additional evidence that an adult apparently used other children to help kidnap a missing 2-year-old boy.

The search for Dylan Esaú Gómez Pérez led prosecutors in southern Chiapas state, on the Guatemalan border, to a house in San Cristobal de las Casas where 23 abducted children were being kept in deplorable conditions and forced to sell trinkets and handicrafts in the street.

But Dylan, who turns 3 in November, was not among them.

Reviewing surveillance cameras, state prosecutor Jorge Llaven said that a boy and a girl, both apparently around 12, were seen talking to a woman who is a suspect in the June 30 abduction. Llaven identified the woman as only as “Ofelia,” and offered a $13,500 reward for information about the location of her or the missing boy.

In photos from cameras, the boy and the girl enter the public market where Dylan’s mother worked in the colonial city. Dylan appears to follow the boy, and then the girl takes Dylan by the back of the jacket and walks out of the market with him. The girl is later seen returning alone, apparently having handed the missing boy over to someone else.

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