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11 emaciated children rescued from New Mexico compound amid exorcism claims

The complaint also mentions that the property had “odorous trash everywhere, no clean water, no electricity, no plumbing/sewer."
UPDATED MAR 30, 2020
(Source:Police Department)
(Source:Police Department)

New disturbing details have emerged from the compound in New Mexico, where authorities found 11 starving children while hunting for a father who had allegedly kidnapped his sick son, reports state.

Although the investigations in the case are still ongoing, some of its details mentioned in the court documents are already public, which includes the description of the squalid condition the police officials found the children in.

The entire case began when authorities launched a hunt in Clayton County, Georgio for Siraj Ibn Wahhaj, who had allegedly kidnapped his three-year-old child, ABC News reported.

The child’s mother alerted the authorities and said he “wanted to perform an exorcism on said child because he believes the child is possessed by the devil,” according to an arrest warrant which was issued on January 9, 2018.

The authorities, nearly seven months later, traced Siraj Ibn Wahhaj to Taos, near the Colorado border in New Mexico and the Taos County Sheriff's Office in New Mexico executed a search warrant for the 39-year-old Wahhaj. The search warrant was for a compound in the area of Amalia, Taos.

According to criminal complaint, “The property is best described as a compound surrounded in part with an earthen berm and old tires stacked up around it, with open trenches and pits, with numerous trip hazards and wood with nails sticking up and broken glass and bottles litter [sic] around the grounds, overall this is readily identifiable and hazardous with extremely filthy living conditions.”

The complaint also mentions that the property had “odorous trash everywhere, no clean water, no electricity, no plumbing/sewer."

Authorities found 11 children and five adults living in the compound, including Siraj Wahhaj. The complaint states that all the children were between ages 1 to 15 years old and “were not clean, without shoes and without proper hygiene and rags for clothing.”

The officials also found loaded firearms within the reach of the children and it appeared to them that the children had “likely not eaten in days.” Police arrested all five adults, including Siraj Wahhaj, another male Lucas Morton, 40, and three women, Subhanah Amatullah Wahhaj, 35, Hujrah Wahhaj, 38, and Jany Leveille, 35.

All of them were charged with 11 counts of child abuse, with each count being a third-degree felony, according to Taos County Sheriff Jerry Hogrefe.

The officers, however, did not find the three-year-old boy who was allegedly kidnapped earlier this year and have continued their search for the missing child.