Two detained for human trafficking in Hancock Co. traffic stop

Romulo Molina
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State police nabbed two men from Honduras for alleged human trafficking during a traffic stop in Hancock County.

ISP Trooper Matt Wilson stopped a Toyota Tacoma that was traveling east on I-70 near Mt. Comfort Road around 11:15 a.m. Tuesday. After detecting inconsistencies in the stories told by two adult males and two juveniles in the car, Wilson investigated further.

"I could tell the kids had not eaten and were very scared of the two males that were with them so I tried to do everything I possibly could to put them at ease," Trooper Wilson said.

Extra officers questioned the two adults while he took the 12 and 13 year old cousins next door.

"I went into McDonald's and bought four cheese burgers and a couple of cokes and gave them to the kids. They were hungry and I was hoping it would put them at ease with us and let them know we're the good guys," Trooper Wilson said.

That's when they started talking about being forced to swim to America, but not for freedom.

"The kids admitted they were being smuggled across the border to Columbus, Ohio in order to repay a debt that their family owed in Guatemala," he said.

Romulo Molina, 26, was arrested and charged with felony human trafficking. He was taken to the Hancock County Jail. The other male was turned over to the Department of Homeland Security and will face deportation.

It's an arrest that reaffirms Trooper Wilson's love for his job.

"It's not the most glamorous thing that we do out here until you really realize you probably saved two kids lives from a life of slavery more less because that's what they were going to be used for is free labor or whatever they wanted them to do," he said.

The children were placed in the custody of Child Protective Services.