Moms of 11 children found at New Mexico compound arrested

County Sheriff's Office of the rural compound during an unsuccessful search for

The Sheriff's Office named the three females as Jany Leveille (35), Hujrah Wahhaj (38), and Subhannah Wahhaj (35).

The compound, surrounded by tires and a trench, is located on the outskirts of the rural community of Amalia, New Mexico, near the Colorado state line, about 50 miles (80 km) north of Taos.

All five adults who had lived at the compound, including the missing child's father, Siraj Ibn Wahhaj, have been charged with 11 counts of child abuse, third-degree felonies.

A 3-year-old boy reported missing from Georgia's Clayton County since December 2017 was not among the 11 children found at the compound.

The investigation started past year on the opposite side of the U.S.in Jonesboro, Georgia, where Siraj Wahhaj was accused of kidnapping his toddler. It was not immediately clear either had attorneys.

The message said, in part, "we are starving and need food and water".

'I absolutely knew that we couldn't wait on another agency to step up and we had to go check this out as soon as possible'.

"It's obvious to me that they were brainwashed and feel great intimidation from the men that were in control of this facility", Hogrefe said of the women and children.

Initially, the women were briefly detained for questioning but not criminally charged so that state child services could interview them for their own investigation, Hogrefe said.

Officials are waiting on an identification of the body, and can't positively say if it's the body of missing 3-year-old Abdul-ghani Wahhaj.

One of the men was Siraj Wahhaj, who is accused of kidnapping his toddler from Jonesboro, Georgia.

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(Taos County Sheriff's Department via AP).

The other man, Lucas Morten, is facing a charge of suspicion of harboring a fugitive.

Hogrefe said that Federal Bureau of Investigation agents had surveilled the compound a few weeks previous but did not at the time find probable cause to conduct a search.

In an arrest warrant from Georgia the mother alleged that the father had wanted to perform an exorcism on the boy, but Hogrefe said investigators had no evidence this had occurred.

Wahhaj, who was heavily armed, at first refused to cooperate but was eventually "taken down", the sheriff's office said.

Badger explained that a dispute regarding the alleged squatters began in January, but once he learned children were living at the property, he attempted to find an amicable solution.

The missing child's grandfather, Siraj Wahhaj, is a well-known Muslim imam of the Masjik Al-Taqwa mosque in Brooklyn, N.Y. He and other family members posted several pleas over the last few months asking for help finding the toddler, his father and the others.

Once both men were in custody, deputies tried to comfort the children, who Hogrefe said had no shoes and were wearing "rags" for clothing.

Two have been arrested after the children were discovered in what have been described as 'the saddest living conditions and poverty I have seen'.

Hogrefe told reporters and residents gathered at the Taos County Commission chambers Tuesday (Aug. 7) his office is waiting for the New Mexico Office of the Medical Examiner to identify the remains.

"Many more rounds of ammo were found in the makeshift compound that consists of a small travel trailer buried in the ground covered by plastic with no water, plumbing, or electricity", the sheriff's office said.

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