Hodaya Monsonego
Hodaya Monsonego before her arrest
Hodaya Monsonego

Peru allows 'special needs' Israeli caught with drugs to return home

Hodaya Monsonego, said to be cognitively impaired, hopes to return to Israel before Rosh Hashanah, having spent one year in jail and one year under house arrest in Lima after being arrested with 28 kg of cocaine

Itamar Eichner |
Published: 08.18.21, 23:20
An Israeli woman with "special needs", jailed in Peru two years ago on suspicion of drug smuggling, was on Wednesday told by authorities she will be able to return to Israel.
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  • Hodaya Monsonego, 26, who is said to be cognitively impaired according to her family, was arrested with another Israeli national on August of 2019 at an airport in Lima, carrying 28 kilograms of cocaine.
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    הודיה מונסנגו
    הודיה מונסנגו
    Hodaya Monsonego
    She spent one year in jail before being released to house arrest, where she stayed until now, living with a local Jewish family.
    There is still no official release letter, but it is expected to be issued by Peruvian officials in the coming days.
    Monsonego apparently hopes to return to Israel before the holiday of Rosh Hashanah in September.
    Efforts for her release have been mediated by high-profile Israeli officials, including former president Reuven Rivlin, who wrote a letter to Peru's President Martin Vizcarra, asking him to grant clemency to Monsonego in February of 2020.
    2 View gallery
    Hodaya Monsonego
    Hodaya Monsonego
    Hodaya Monsonego before her arrest
    Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, meanwhile, is said to have taken on the issue as a personal project.
    Her family claimed that smugglers took advantage of her due to her cognitive disability and the drugs did not belong to her. The family said Hodaya was travelling through Spain when she met a group of people, who offered her to fly to Latin America and exploited her.
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