Police rescue businessman held for month
29 May 2007, CARACAS- After a shootout in a wooded area, Venezuelan police rescued Spanish businessman Nicolas Alberto Cid Souto who was kidnapped last month, Cojedes Gov. Johnny Yanez said.
29 May 2007
CARACAS- After a shootout in a wooded area, Venezuelan police rescued Spanish businessman Nicolas Alberto Cid Souto who was kidnapped last month, Cojedes Gov. Johnny Yanez said.
Cid Souto, 76, is in good physical condition and was taken to the town of San Carlos, capital of Cojedes state, 255 kilometers (158 miles) west of Caracas.
Officials at the Spanish Embassy in Venezuela told Efe that the businessman, who had been kidnapped on April 22, is doing well and said that Spanish police inspectors actively collaborated with the Venezuelan police in rescuing the captive.
Yanez told Venezolana de Television that the rescue operation began at 9:00 p.m. Sunday (0100 GMT Monday) and ended around 6:00 a.m. Monday (1000 GMT).
"The order was given to stake out the area where Mr. Souto had been located, put on bulletproof vests and get him out of there," the governor said.
He said that before the officers could get to where the businessman was being held, "there was a shootout" that did not put Souto in danger.
Yanez described the place where the businessman was held captive as "a mountainous, wooded area on the Cojedes border with Yaracuy state in the Anzoategui municipality."
He also said that at the time of the rescue it was dark and foggy, and said that several police and military units took part in the operation.
Yanez said that two helicopters took part in the search-and-pursuit operation to nab the seven kidnappers who were holding the businessman captive.
The governor said the kidnappers were unable to remove Souto from Cojedes state thanks to a cordon cutting off all exit paths that was deployed scarcely 15 minutes after the kidnapping took place.
He said that months ago President Hugo Chavez attended the inauguration of the biggest industrial pig farm in Latin America, owned by the Souto Group.
The Spaniard was kidnapped by heavily armed individuals from his Hato Baranda ranch, located in the Anzoategui municipality of Cojedes state, 280 kilometers (174 miles) west of Caracas.
Cid Souto, born in the northwestern Spanish region of Galicia, is chairman of the Souto Group, one of the most powerful agro-industrial complexes in Venezuela, with activities that range from producing food compounds to processing and marketing poultry and meat products. EFE
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news