VANCOUVER, Washington (KPTV) — An 8-year-old girl who has been missing since Oct. 2018 has been safely returned to the United States after being found in Mexico, according to the FBI.

The FBI says Aranza Maria Ochoa Lopez was found safe last month in Michoacán, Mexico, by Mexican authorities. She was taken back to the U.S. by FBI special agents.

Aranza Lopez was kidnapped by her mother, Esmeralda Lopez-Lopez, on Oct. 25, 2018, during a court-supervised visitation at Vancouver Mall. It was determined that Aranza Lopez had been taken to Mexico.

“For more than four years, the FBI and our partners did not give up on Aranza,” said Richard A. Collodi, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Seattle field office. “Our concern now will be supporting Aranza as she begins her reintegration into the U.S.”

Esmeralda Lopez-Lopez was arrested in Puebla, Mexico, in 2019 and extradited to Clark County. In Jan. 2021, Lopez-Lopez was sentenced to 20 months in prison after pleading guilty to second-degree kidnapping, second-degree robbery, and first-degree custodial interference.

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