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Cuenca police make arrests, recover baby, in murder, kidnapping, human trafficking case

A tragic tale of murder, kidnapping and human trafficking ended Thursday morning in Cuenca with the arrest of two women in the Miraflores neighborhood.

A police officer holds the 10-day-old baby boy rescued in the murder-kdinapping case Thursday in Cuenca.

The arrests of Maryuri Alexandra G. and Yomayra Mercedes Ch. on charges of human trafficking of a 10-day-old baby boy followed the Wednesday murder of the baby’s mother in Guayaquil. According to police, the murder of 17-year-old Adriana Riera was masterminded by Riera’s stepsister, Iris Daniela C.,  for the purpose of selling the baby for $2,000.

Riera’s body was discovered hours after the murder in the bathroom of her home in the Sergio Toral housing project in Guayaquil.

According to police, Iris Daniela C., who is in custody on a murder charge in Guayaquil, was assisted in the crime by two male companions and intended to sell the baby to Maryuri Alexandra G. of Cuenca who had recently lost her son.

Following the murder, the baby and Yomayra Mercedes Ch. were taken by taxi from Guayaquil to Cuenca. The taxi driver was briefly detained but later released when prosecutors determined he was not involved in the crime.

The investigation and arrests were carried out by a special homicide and kidnapping unit of the National Police with assistance from the U.S. State Department.