Indian student beaten, held captive at US home for months; ‘inhumane’, cops say
Indian student beaten, forced into labour for months in US; 3 Indian-origin men charged
A 20-year-old Indian student in the US, who was held captive for months without access to a bathroom, beaten, and forced to work at three homes by his cousin and two other Indian-origin men, was rescued, authorities said. The victim spent months trapped in three homes in the Missouri.
Venkatesh R Sattaru, Sravan Varma Penumetcha and Nikhil Verma Penmatsa were arrested from a home on a rural highway in St Charles County, police said. They have been charged with human trafficking, kidnapping and assault. Police rescued the student after they went to investigate the home as a concerned citizen became aware of his situation and called 911.
The victim is safe and being treated at a hospital for multiple bone fractures, police said. The men locked the student in a basement for three months and forced him to sleep on an unfinished floor without access to a bathroom, they said.
“It’s absolutely inhumane and unconscionable that one human being could treat another human being like this,” authorities said.
The main suspect in the case, Venkatesh R Sattaru, 35, is also charged with human trafficking for the purpose of slavery and contributing to human trafficking. The other two live in the home where the student was rescued from.
“They beat him with their fists, they stomped on him, they beat him with electrical wiring, with PVC pipes. They forced him to sleep in an unfinished basement, they starved him, and limited his access to the public and to restrooms. If you see something, say something. We would much rather check it out and find nothing than have an incident like this that’s been going on for nearly a year,” police said.
However, it’s unclear whether there might be more victims related to this investigation, police said.