Photo: Colombian marines
Marines rescued a businessman who had been kidnapped by the Los Urabeños gang in Buenaventura, a city in southwestern Colombia, the navy said Thursday.
During the rescue operation, which was carried out on Monday, the marines found Hilton Fabian Renteria with his hands bound in a darkened room of an abandoned house in the residential Comuna 7 neighborhood of Buenaventura. One of his abductors was also captured in the raid.
“They had this businessman’s hands bound,” the commander of the 2nd Marine Infantry Brigade in Buenaventura, Col. Roberto Carlos Gonzalez, told Efe.
The gang had demanded 30 million pesos (about $15,569) in exchange for their hostage’s release, the marine officer said.
“The criminals belonged to the Los Urabeños criminal organization,” Gonzalez said, adding that the arrested man, Mauro Portocarrero Riascos, 25, was guarding Renteria in the abandoned house.
The navy and anti-kidnapping and anti-extortion units of the National Police had received intelligence information about the “suspicious presence of several individuals in the Buenos Aires II sector of ... Buenaventura, who allegedly were holding a bound person against his will,” Gonzalez said.
“This gang focuses on drug trafficking and extortion in Buenaventura and its surroundings,” the police commander said.
In 2013, there were only two known kidnapping cases in Buenaventura - that of Renteria on Dec. 29 and that of a woman who was rescued on Oct. 20 - the navy said.