A group of desperate people braving treacherous terrain on their way to the US to seek asylum have also been dealing with the deadly Zetas cartel.

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At least 100 members of the large travelling cluster of thousands of people often referred to as a “migrant caravan” went missing, and human rights officials believe they have been abducted by the cartels, who will likely hold them for ransom, Yahoo reports.

The majority of the group of men, women and children are fleeing persecution in Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador which has been plagued with gang violence.  

Among the missing are reportedly children as well as the adults who were accompanying them. Human Rights officials had been trying to keep tabs on the group and discovered that Central American migrants went missing after traveling through the state of Puebla. Many migrants who accepted rides along the way were believed to have been kidnapped and taken to the Zetas gang.

“The testimonies I have heard [of those who managed to escape] was that many of those migrants were handed over to organized crime near the Federal Police base in Puebla,” Arturo Peimbert, the human rights ombudsman in Oaxaca said.