SAN JOSE – A Mexican businessman kidnapped on April 11 was rescued and three suspects were arrested by police, Costa Rica’s OIJ law enforcement agency said.
“The rescue was carried out last Friday in Alajuela province outside a dwelling, where they were apparently keeping the victim, and at the moment when a man guarding him brought him out to move him to another location,” the OIJ said in a statement.
A 36-year-old Nicaraguan man was arrested at the property and two other members of the kidnapping ring, Costa Ricans ages 40 and 43, were detained on Saturday.
Police searched a house in Tres Rios, a city outside San Jose, where the unidentified victim was first held captive.
A total of four houses were searched and evidence, including items belonging to the victim and cell phones, gathered for the investigation, the OIJ said.
Investigators have determined that the ring operates in Costa Rica and targets foreigners, mainly Mexicans, by making phony investment offers.
“This motivated professionals and investors to travel to Costa Rica, where they were met at the airport by the suspects and taken away in vehicles belonging to the criminal organization,” the OIJ said.
The gang threatened the victims with guns and forced them to contact their families and pay up for their freedom, officials said.
Relatives of the Mexican businessman rescued in Alajuela were asked to pay $50,000 and contacted Mexican police, who notified their counterparts in Costa Rica.