Utah family wants relative freed from Mexican jail

- SALT LAKE CITY, (ABC 4 Utah) – Family members spent Tuesday in a Mexico Courthouse, but after hours of testimony there was no decision on whether or not Yanira Maldonado would be released from jail.

Her sister-in-laws in Utah said the delay left them on pins and needles.

“You have to sit and wonder how she’s being treated while she’s in jail,” Amy Rayner, a sister-in-law, said.

Relatives thought they would get an answer from a Mexico judge on whether or not Yanira would be released, but a judge never showed up.

Her family said prosecutors and witnesses listened to testimony from four witnesses, not including Gary and his father.

Yanira and Gary were returning home to Arizona after attending a funeral in Mexico on May 22. The bus they were on was stopped at a military checkpoint in Hermosillo, Mexico where authorities reportedly found marijuana under Yanira’s seat.

Witnesses testified Tuesday that Yanira and Gary were the last to board the bus. They also said Yanira was only had a blanket and purse on her.

The family believes Yanira is being framed.

“She’s a really good woman,” Becky Maldonado, another sister-in-law, said. “She’s a Christian woman who doesn’t do drugs.”

Yanira’s story has the attention of Arizona Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake, along with top U.S. Officials and the Mexican Embassy in Washington, D.C.

The family hopes Yanira will be proven innocent.

“Everyone is banning together to bring her home,” Maldonado added.

Military officials from the checkpoint in Hermosillo are expected to testify Wednesday in the case. A judge could hand down a decision as early as Wednesday.

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