Report: 38 Kidnap-for-Ransom Suspects in Custody



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Lebanese Armed Forces have so far arrested 38 people suspected of involvement in the kidnapping of wealthy businessmen or their family members in return for ransom, a government source said Thursday. The source told An Nahar daily that security agencies are questioning the 38 suspects who were arrested in the past two days. The Lebanese army's intelligence announced on Wednesday that it thwarted two kidnapping attempts against Ali al-Sabbah, a Lebanese expatriate, and the son of one of the owners of al-Mir bakery in the northern city of Tripoli. The suspects, Moussa Harb and Ziad al-Jamal, a Syrian, were had been arrested in the two plots, it said. Also Wednesday, the Internal Security Forces said three suspects in the abduction of businessman Najib Youssef had been arrested in the southern city of Tyre. Youssef was kidnapped earlier this month and released five days later. The Higher Defense Council that convened under President Michel Suleiman at Baabda palace on Wednesday vowed to take strong measures to fight the kidnap-for-ransom phenomenon. Nazih Nassar, who was abducted in the town of Torbol in the eastern Bekaa valley around one month ago, was dumped on the road at the entrance to the village of Brital on Wednesday. The state-run National News Agency said Nassar made it safely home and denied that a ransom had been paid to set him free.


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