Kidnap & Ransom update July 31, 2018
31-Jul-18

AMERICAS

1. (NICARAGUA, 30/07/18) Paramilitaries continue kidnapping citizens
José Arsenio López Canales was kidnapped on 30 July by a group of heavily armed paramilitaries in the municipality of San Marcos, Carazo department. According to the victim’s daughter, a truck was seen parked outside their home with at least 13 paramilitaries who later entered the family residence holding all its residents at gunpoint and later taking the father away. At least 27 people were kidnapped by paramilitaries in the same locality during a protest on 8 July. In addition to carry out kidnappings, armed pro-government groups known as “parapolice” or “death squads” in Nicaragua have killed many others during several clashes in various cities since April, when protests against the administration of President Daniel Ortega began. FULL ARTCILE (1)

2. (US, 31/07/18) Five arrested for kidnap for ransom in Berkeley
Five South Carolina men have been arrested for allegedly kidnapping a 21-year-old man from a Berkeley motel on 28 July, and threatening to kill him unless they were paid USD 30,000 in ransom. Further investigation led police to Patterson city, where they located the victim and arrested five suspects. An assault rifle was recovered from the scene. The victim was found badly injured. Berkeley police declined to say why the five South Carolina men were in their city and what prompted the kidnapping. FULL ARTICLE

MIDDLE EAST

3. (ISRAEL, 30/07/18) 22 activists illegally detained by Israeli troops in international waters
A total of 22 activists who were on a humanitarian mission aboard the Norwegian flagged Al-Awda flotilla ship to Gaza, were illegally detained in international waters by Israeli troops on 30 July. The arrested activists included nationals from different countries. One of the NGOs participating in the mission, Humanitarian Care Malaysia Berhad (MyCARE), said it considered the incident “a violation of maritime law”. “The Al-Awda ship was on a peaceful mission without provocation. It was not carrying weapons, only solidarity messages and a little medical aid, so Israel’s actions are like piracy,” MyCARE’s chairman said. The Al-Awda crew are reported to be in safe condition and their ship is berthed at Ashdod Port. FULL ARTICLE (1)

AFRICA

4. (LIBYA, 30/07/18) Sudanese army rescue five missing Egyptian soldiers in Libya
Sudan’s National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) on 30 July said it freed an Egyptian force abducted by Libyan gunmen on the border triangle among Libya, Sudan and Egypt. The kidnapped group comprised an Egyptian army officer and four soldiers. It is not clear when the abduction took place, although the Sudanese NISS said the rescue operation took “several days”, saying it was carried out in southern Libya, in close coordination between the NISS and the Sudanese army military intelligence. The rescued Egyptian unit has been handed over to the Egyptian General Intelligence Directorate in good health condition. The agency did not elaborate on the circumstances surrounding the abduction or the identity of the kidnappers, who it described as “outlaws” and “infiltrators”. The rescue operation took place in the frame of joint security operations recently developed between Sudan and Egypt in order to protect the border between the two countries from terrorist infiltration from Libya. FULL ARTICLE (1

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5. (MADAGASCAR, 30/07/18) Kidnapped Indian businessman released
Unofficial sources revealed that Indian businessman Abdul Aziz Mansour was released by his kidnappers on 29 July, after 10 days in captivity. The victim was released in unclear circumstances in the outskirts of Antananarivo. It is believed a ransom was paid for his release. Information released by the national police suggests that a criminal kingpin known as “Lama”, responsible for a series of kidnappings in the city between 2004 and 2005, may be behind Mansour’s kidnapping. Mansour, the owner of a household appliance shop in the Tsaralalana area of the Malagasy capital. Antananarivo, was kidnapped on 19 July. FULL ARTICLE (1)

ASIA

6. (CAMBODIA, 29/07/18) Chinese mafia and crime taking over Cambodian beach
While the influx of big-spending tourists, specially Chinese, has had some positive economic impact on the beach resort of Sihanoukville, crime has also notably increased recently, according to local media. The influx of Chinese tourists have created opportunities for Chinese mafia to come in and commit various crimes and kidnap Chinese investors, causing insecurity in the province, said Sihanoukville Governor Yun Min. It is reported that recently in July, five Chinese tourists who lost everything at a casino kidnapped five compatriots and held them to ransom in an effort to make enough money to return home. FULL ARTICLE

7. (AFGHANISTAN, 30/07/18) 13 kidnapped Afghan construction workers freed
Thirteen abducted road construction labourers were freed by the Taliban in Afghanistan’s southern province of Kandahar on 30 July, following mediation of local elders and villagers, a local official said. The labourers were abducted on 21 June, after Taliban militants attacked a road construction site in Spin Boldak district of Kandahar. Four Afghan Border Police personnel were killed in the assault. The Taliban in April urged civilians to stay away from official gatherings, military convoys and locations regarded as legitimate targets. FULL ARTICLE

8. (MALAYSIA, 31/07/18) Pakistanis arrested for abducting Indian man in Malaysia
On 28 July, Malaysian police rescued a kidnapped Indian man from the Tampoi area of Johor city, and arrested three Pakistani nationals guarding the victim. The police raid followed reports made by the victim’s relatives both in India and in Malaysia after a call was received from the kidnappers, who demanded a ransom of RM200,000 (over USD 49,000) and threatened to kill the victim if this was not paid. It is not clear when the abduction took place and under which circumstances. FULL ARTICLE (1)

9. (PHILIPPINES, 31/07/18) Indian youth rescued from kidnappers in the Philippines
The Philippines police rescued a kidnapped 20-year-old Indian national on 30 July. Pardeep Kumar was allegedly kidnapped on 28 July and a ransom of Rs 5 lakh (over USD 7,000) was demanded for his release. The victim’s father, who was informed of the incident by one of Pardeep’s friends, approached the authorities in his locality. These in turn notified the Indian Ambassador in the Philippines on the incident, requesting him to take prompt action in the matter. Pardeep is a resident of Singapore, where he was completing his studies since 2016. It is unclear what took the victim to the Philippines. FULL ARTICLE