Peru: Young Israeli woman released from prison

Hodaya Monsongo, 25-year-old Israeli woman with special needs charged with drug offenses, to be under house arrest at Jewish family's home.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Hodaya Monsongo
Hodaya Monsongo
Courtesy of the family

Hodaya Monsongo, a 25-year-old Israeli woman with special needs who was jailed in Peru after being charged with involvement in drug offenses, was released from prison.

Monsongo was detained in prison for about 10 months after traveling with her girlfriend when cocaine-type drugs were seized in their suitcases. She is currently under house arrest with a Jewish family.

The Israeli foreign ministry Sunday morning confirmed that "Hodaya Monsongo was released to house arrest last night and is staying at a Jewish family in Lima."

President Reuven Rivlin thanked the government in Peru for acceding to his petition in the case of Hodaya Monsongo and expressed hope that this is a move towards her full release as soon as possible.

Several months ago, Rivlin wrote to President of Peru Martin Alberto Vizcarra Cornejo with a request to grant clemency to Monsongo, who had been under arrest in Peru for several months.

In his letter, the President wrote that Hodaya suffers medical issues and has been diagnosed with limited cognitive ability, and her judgment is therefore impaired. In addition, he wrote that she has no previous criminal record and that it is reasonable to believe that her unique condition, as described in his letter, led her to be involved in the alleged matter unintentionally.

The President requested that the authorities take into account her fragile condition, and added that Hodaya speaks only Hebrew and that she has found it difficult to communicate with her local lawyers.

“Taking into account these severe humanitarian circumstances, we are deeply concerned for Hodaya’s mental and physical safety, especially in light of her prolonged detention and distance from her family,” Rivlin stressed, adding, “under these unique circumstances, I would kindly appeal to your mercy and compassion with a request for your personal intervention to grant Ms. Hodaya Monsongo a pardon.”