The Words of the Ota Family
Group Frees Japanese Businessman In Paraguay After $138,000 Ransom Paid
April 20, 2007
TOKYO -- A Japanese businessman kidnapped in Paraguay earlier this month along with his Japanese secretary and two Paraguayans has been released safely, a senior Japanese foreign ministry official said Friday. Paraguayan authorities said that the police confirmed the release of the three early Friday and that they seem to have no injuries. A ransom for the three equivalent to $138,000 was paid, they said.
The group, which had released the secretary on April 10, freed Hirokazu Ota, 62, at Ciudad del Este -- about 300 kilometers from Asuncion, the capital of Paraguay -- along with the two locals, Senior Vice Foreign Minister Takeshi Iwaya told a press conference. Ota, who is a member of the Unification Church, runs a property company in the capital and its officials told the Japanese embassy in Paraguay shortly after 3 p.m. Japan time that they have taken protective custody of the three, Iwaya said.
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