A 20-year-old student from India was allegedly held captive for several months by his cousin and two other men across multiple Ohio homes
Police are investigating three men in Ohio in connection with accusations they kept a 20-year-old in deplorable conditions and repeatedly beat him.
The 20-year-old student came to the U.S. on a student visa pursuing an education, but was allegedly held captive in the basements of various homes owned by Venkatesh Sattaru across Ohio, according to a press release from the St. Charles County Police Department.
Authorities were called to perform a wellness check at a home in Defiance, Ohio, and were unable to make contact with the alleged victim, who according to the press release ran out the front door screaming for help.
Sattaru, 35, Sravan Penumetcha and Nikhil Penmatsa have been charged in connection with the case. Charges against the men include trafficking for purposes of slavery or forced labor, contributing to human trafficking, accessory domestic assault in the first degree and kidnapping, per police.
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While in the custody of the three men, the alleged victim was forced to work at Sattaru's company all day and perform "menial tasks," the release alleges. If the work was not to the suspects' satisfaction, the suspects allegedly beat and whipped him, police claim. Police allege the man was also sleep deprived and starved.
He is currently hospitalized and receiving treatment for multiple fractures in his body, including in his hands, feet, arms and ribs. Scarring and lacerations across his body are also being treated, according to police.
Sattaru, Penumetcha and Penmatsa are being held without bond. It's not immediately clear if they have entered pleas or have lawyers.
According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the alleged victim arrived in the U.S. in April, intending to study at the Missouri University of Science and Technology.
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