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      Teen allegedly used 'blackmail' to sexually abuse girl

      Jose Armando Barajas // Cameron County Jail Photo

      A San Benito teen is behind bars after he and two relatives allegedly sexually abused a 13-year-old girl that they had been blackmailing.

      Cameron County Sheriff TMs Department deputies arrested 18-year-old Jose Armando Barajas over the weekend.

      Court records released on Monday show Barajas, his 14-year-old brother and their 14-year-old cousin are all accused of participating in the abuse.

      The allegations came to light when the girl made an outcry to a counselor at school about two weeks ago.

      Years Of Abuse

      Deputies learned that the Barajas had been sexually abusing the girl since she was 6 years old.

      The abuse continue over the years at different homes both inside and outside San Benito city limits.

      Records show that Barajas' brother joined in when the girl was 11 years old.

      Barajas' 14-year-old cousin allegedly joined in the abuse earlier this year.

      The girl told investigators that she was too scared to tell anyone because Barajas and his brother told her they would tell her father that she wanted it.

      Ongoing Investigation

      The girl told deputies that she reached a breaking point in May when she asked them to stop and the abuse continued.

      Court records show that the case remains under investigation by both the sheriff TMs department and Child Protective Services.

      Deputies arrested Barajas on a first-degree felony aggravated sexual assault of a child charge on Friday.

      Barajas appeared before Cameron County Magistrate Judge Patricia Edelstein on Saturday morning where he was issued a $150,000 dollar bond.

      The San Benito teenager remains in custody at the Cameron County Jail.