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Trucker forced man to illegally drive big rig against his will for weeks in ‘human trafficking’ incident, PA cops say

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A trucker is facing multiple charges for allegedly holding two people hostage inside his truck after promising them CDL training.

Florida-based truck driver William Gutierrez, 63, has been charged with two counts each of trafficking in individuals, involuntary servitude, non-payment of wages, and unlawful restraint.

Gutierrez was arrested following a 911 call that came in around 4 p.m. on Friday, April 19, about two people being held against their will in a moving semi truck.

Pennsylvania police were able to locate the truck in Bern Township. The truck was stopped and the two victims and Gutierrez were removed from the truck.

According to WFMZ, the two people inside the truck were a couple from Nicaragua living in the U.S. illegally who used to live in the same Nicaraguan town as Gutierrez.

Gutierrez allegedly used Facebook to invite the male victim to a “CDL training program” in order to start his trucking career.

The male victim told police that once he met with Gutierrez and got on the truck in Virginia in early March, he was required to do most of the truck driving, even though he did not have a driver’s license. The male victim was also required to cook and clean, he says.

The victim’s wife joined the two on the truck in early April after she was promised $2000 a week as part of the training program.

The male victim later told police that he began to suspect that this was not a legitimate training program when Gutierrez drove drunk and smoked marijuana on the truck. He said that Gutierrez disabled the truck’s ELD device to allow them to violate hours of service rules.

The victims also said that Gutierrez failed to pay them the money promised.

On April 13, the couple asked for their money and permission to leave the truck, but they said that Gutierrez threatened their families and said that he would have the couple deported if they did not comply.

The male victim said he took advantage of Gutierrez falling into a trance-like state after smoking marijuana on April 19 when he called 911.

Gutierrez was booked into the Berks County Jail and held on a $250,000 bond.

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