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A Florida girl who was abducted as a six-year-old has been found safe and well after vanishing 14 years ago, say police.
Jacqueline Hernandez, who disappeared in 2007 and is now 19, has been reunited with her mother.
Ms Hernandez’s mother, Angelica Vences-Salgado, was “contacted via social media by a female claiming to be her abducted daughter,” according to the Clermont Police Department.
Investigators say she told Ms Vences-Salgado she was in Mexico and wanted to meet her at the US border in Texas on September 10.
The women arranged to meet, and were then intercepted by authorities at the border entry point of Laredo, Texas, as officials sought to confirm whether Jacqueline Hernandez was who she was claiming to be.
“Based on the documentation provided to [...] agencies by Angelica and Clermont Police Department, they determined that the female was indeed Jacqueline Hernandez who was abducted from her mother in 2007,” said the police report, continuing, “At approximately 4.55pm, Jacqueline was successfully reunited with her mother.”
Police later released a photo of the two embracing.
Ms Vences-Salgado told Fox News that spending so much time without her daughter was hard, but now her house is filled with signs and balloons celebrating her return. Ms Hernandez told the channel she had a good childhood but always missed her mother.
In 2007, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said Ms Hernandez was “allegedly abducted by her father, Pablo Hernandez,” on December 22 of that year.
A felony warrant for kidnapping was issued against him and investigators suspected at the time that he might have taken Ms Hernandez to Mexico. Clermont Police are now working with the FBI to apprehend Mr Hernandez.
Clermont Police Chief Charles Broadway said in a statement. “In this case, several agencies in different counties and states across the nation were able to create a force multiplier and aid in reuniting the victim with her mother after 14 years.”
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