Taos Co. Sheriff believes they found missing Georgia boy's remains | KOB 4

Taos Co. Sheriff believes they found missing Georgia boy's remains

Ryan Laughlin
August 07, 2018 06:40 PM

TAOS, N.M. - Authorities believe they found Abdul-Ghani Wahhaj's remains near a compound in northern New Mexico.


Taos County Sheriff Jerry Hogrefe said the remains were discovered Monday, on what would have been the boy's 4th birthday, after receiving new information. Sheriff Hogrefe would not say how long they believe the boy has been dead. Authorities are waiting to get more information from the medical examiner, including a positive identification on the body.

The sheriff also revealed new information about Friday's raid on the compound near Amalia, New Mexico. The sheriff said it was a no-knock raid when tactical teams discovered the five suspects and eleven children living in what has been described as "third-world" conditions.

The sheriff said they first received information that Abdul-Ghani was possibly in Taos County in May, the same time a surveillance operation began. Answering questions, the sheriff said there was no way they could've entered the property before Friday.

"I had no probable cause to go onto this property prior to the day I wrote the first warrant. I wish, in hindsight, there was, but we would not have been there lawfully," Sheriff Hogrefe said.

The eleven children found are in New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department custody. 

Siraj Wahhaj, Hujrah Wahhaj, Subhannah Wahhaj, Lucas Morton and Jany Leveille all face child abuse charges. However, those charges could change. They were filed before the remains, believed to be  Abdul-Ghani Wahhaj, were found. The suspects' initial court appearance has been pushed back until Wednesday, at the earliest.


Ryan Laughlin

Copyright 2018 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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