Five men arrested in Missouri for alleged trafficking of 14-year-old to California

Five men were arrested in Missouri on Monday for allegedly trafficking a 14-year-old girl from Indiana to California.

The men were charged with endangering the welfare of a child in Macon County Circuit Court, Macon County Prosecutor Joshua Meisner said.

“The investigation’s ongoing, so these charges may change,” he said. “There’s also several law enforcement agencies involved, including the FBI. It’s too early for me to know how all that’s going to shake out yet, but as of right now that’s what they’re charged with in our county.”

Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers were told around 2 a.m. Monday of a 14-year-old girl who had run away from Cass County, Indiana, after the girl’s father saw her leave in a black SUV, according to court documents. The man contacted local police and reported her missing.

Law enforcement tracked the girl’s phone and pulled over a black Dodge Durango in Macon County, Missouri. A trooper looked in the vehicle and found the girl, who identified herself as the missing teen. The girl was taken out of the vehicle, and those inside were taken into custody.

The five men, who were allegedly in the country illegally, were alleged to be trafficking the girl from Indiana to California, the trooper wrote in court documents.

The five men charged are:

  • Daniel Ruiz-Lopez, 19, of Honduras

  • Noe Guzman-Hernandez, 24, of Mexico

  • Carlos Funez, 56, of Honduras

  • Arturo Eustaquio, 41, of Mexico

  • Marlon Aguilar, 44, of Honduras

Court records do not list attorneys for the men. All five have bond hearings scheduled for Friday.