FBI Seeking Public Assistance in Locating Suspect - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

FBI Seeking Public Assistance in Locating Suspect

Posted: Updated:

The FBI is asking the public's assistance in finding a kidnapping suspect.

The FBI has released a sketch of the suspect and is asking anyone with information to contact their local law enforcement office or the FBI.

In June of this year, a woman was abducted from Panama City Beach residence and taken to Hattiesburg, MS. Flor Esmeralda Turcio-Arias was able to escape her captors through a bathroom window in the home in Mississippi and contact police.

Two people were charged in that incident, Ruperto Flores, 57, and Castillo Uriel, 31. According to the Hattiesburg Police Department, Turcio-Arias walked into the police office last Thursday and said that she had been abducted from her residence in Florida.

Hattiesburg Police went back with the woman to the residence and found two men and after questioning charged them with conspiracy to commit kidnapping.

The U.S. Justice Department indicted Jacobo Feliciano-Francisco, a/k/a "Uriel Castillo-Ochoa", a/k/a "Kiko", with federal criminal violations related to kidnapping, retaliating against a witness, and transporting an individual in interstate commerce for prostitution.

Their indictment alleges that between 2006 and 2011, numerous organized individuals created a network of brothels and prostitution delivery services in Tennessee and Kentucky, using undocumented aliens from Spanish-speaking countries. F.T., a female individual, cooperated with the FBI in its investigation into these individuals after she was forced and coerced into working as a prostitute for approximately three years. Due to her cooperation, a total of 13 individuals were convicted in Tennessee and Kentucky of various federal sex-trafficking and prostitution criminal charges. In the fall of 2012, following her cooperation with law enforcement, F.T. was approached at her Tennessee residence by another individual and confronted about her cooperation. Out of concern for the safety of F.T. and her family, she and her family were relocated to Panama City Beach, Florida.

Following F.T.'s relocation, Feliciano-Francisco and others conspired to kidnap and did kidnap F.T. with the intent to transport her from Florida to Louisiana where she would be forced to work as a prostitute in retaliation for her prior cooperation with law enforcement. During her kidnapping, F.T. was sexually assaulted by Feliciano-Francisco, and he and others repeatedly threatened the physical safety of both her and her family. Feliciano-Francisco transported F.T. to a residence in Mississippi where she was confined until another conspirator arrived to pick her up and transport her to Louisiana.

Counts One and Two of the indictment charge Feliciano-Francisco with Conspiracy to Kidnap and Kidnapping. If convicted on those counts, Feliciano-Francisco faces a term of imprisonment of up to life, supervised release of up to five (5) years, a fine of up to $250,000, and a $100 special monetary assessment. Counts Three, Four, and Five of the indictment charge Feliciano-Francisco with Retaliation against a Witness, Transportation of an Individual in Interstate Commerce for Prostitution, and Coercion into Prostitution, respectively. If convicted on Counts Three and Five of his indictment, Feliciano-Francisco faces a term of imprisonment of not more than twenty (20) years. If convicted on Count Four of his indictment, Feliciano-Francisco faces a term of imprisonment of not more than ten (10) years. Additionally, as to each of counts Three, Four, and Five, Feliciano-Francisco faces the imposition of a fine of up to $250,000, supervised release of up to 3 years, and a $100 special monetary assessment. 


Here is the press release from the FBI:

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is seeking information on the identity of a man wanted for questioning in connection with the kidnapping of a woman in Panama City Beach, Florida.

On June 27, 2013, the woman was kidnapped, transported across state lines, threatened, and sexually assaulted by her captors. She was later recovered alive.

A sketch of the man wanted for questioning has been released. In August 2013, a federal grand jury in the Northern District of Florida returned a five-count indictment of one of her captors, Jacobo Feliciano-Francisco, a/k/a "Uriel Castillo-Ochoa" a/k/a "Kiko," age 30. Feliciano-Francisco was arrested and then arraigned on August 12, 2013, and is currently in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.

The investigation is ongoing and the FBI is seeking the public's assistance in identifying the man depicted in this sketch. The individual is considered armed and dangerous. If you have any information regarding the identity or location of the individual, please contact the FBI Jacksonville Field Office at (904) 248-7000.

Most Popular