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Parents tell horror stories of abuse at Mexico shelter

Published on Jul 17, 2014 4:37 AM

ZAMORA, Mexico (AFP) - Parents of some of the 458 children rescued from a squalid shelter in western Mexico told horror stories on Wednesday after authorities raided it over alleged sexual assaults and other abuses.

Seeking to get their children back, families from around the country gathered at the charitable shelter, "La Gran Familia" (The Big Family), where the children were still being kept under authorities' care after police arrested the facility's director, Rosa del Carmen Verduzco, and eight employees. Lucia Carranza said she was anxious to see her five-year-old son after only being allowed three visits a year since handing him over to the shelter.

"My husband and I were day workers, we worked in the countryside and survived by the grace of God, so I couldn't keep my baby and they recommended this place," Mrs Carranza, 25, said. "I thought I would be able to see him every week like at other facilities, but no.... We looked for lawyers but everyone told me it was impossible to do anything against her (Verduzco)."

Police found 596 people, including 138 adults, living amid rats and insects when they raided the home on Tuesday after complaints of abuse and kidnapping.

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