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First photos of four men arrested over abduction of footballer Luis Diaz’ father as they face charges including kidnap and theft

Written by on November 13, 2023

First pictures of the four men arrested over the abduction of Luis Diaz’s father have been released.   The suspects face charges including kidnap and theft, with a court hearing due to take place later today in the northern Colombian city of Riohacha.  On Saturday night, it emerged one of the four men, Yerdinson Bolivar Bolivar who is said to use the alias ‘Arenca’ or ‘Areca’ was a trainer at Manuel Luis Diaz’s football school in his hometown of Barrancas.  Colombian authorities have accused him of seeking a job there so he could keep the Liverpool star’s father under surveillance as part of a ‘covert infiltration’ and build up a picture of his movements.  A chilling picture published by Colombian media outlet Semana shows ‘Areca’ behind Mr Diaz stalking’ him in a shoe shop.  The two other suspects, Marlon Rafael Brito Bolivar, alias Marlon, and Brayan Javier Morales Sanjuan, alias Brayan or Negro, are said to have ridden the motorbikes used to abduct Mr. Diaz and his wife Cilenis Marulanda who was rescued shortly afterwards.   The fourth man, Andrys Alcides Bolivar Bolivar, is a currency exchange worker who has been described as the leader of the operation and the man who organised his handover to the left-wing ELN insurgency group who later took responsibility for taking Mr. Diaz hostage in what police have described as a case of ‘criminal outsourcing.’  Local reports have pointed to the ELN using the gang allegedly led by Alcides, known by the alias of Andrys, to deflect attention from their role in the crime.  Alcides’ gang has been named as Los Primos which in English translates as ‘The Cousins.’  The criminal organisation is said to specialise in drug trafficking and has reportedly been identified as a sub-division of the notorious Gulf Clan, whose former leader Dairo Antonio Usaga was once seen as one of the world’s most dangerous drug lords.  Usaga, better-known as Otoniel, was sentenced to 45 years in a US prison in August after pleading guilty to high-level drug trafficking charges.  Reports overnight in Colombia said a police officer who played an instrumental role in Otoniel’s capture in October 2021 in his jungle hideout, before he was extradited the following year to the US, helped identify the four men held over Luis Manuel Diaz’s kidnap.  He is said to have been in England when the October 28 abduction occurred, but was ordered back to Bogota by Colombian police chief William Salamanca so he could work with British authorities on the case.  Several weapons were also seized during the operation to arrest the suspects.  William Salamanca said: ‘We put Operation Freedom in motion the day of the kidnap, which enabled us to identify the alleged intellectual and material authors, among them the criminal group called ‘Los Primos’ who offend using the ‘criminal outsourcing’ method.  During the development of the operation we captured four people allegedly responsible for kidnapping Luis Manuel Diaz.’  One of the videos released by police showed one of the suspects, wearing a white vest top, being read his rights as he was held.  Speaking on Saturday, two days after the release of Luis Diaz’s father, Francisco Barbosa said: ‘We have made good on our pledge and less than 72 hours after Mr Luis Manuel Diaz, the father of the footballer Luis Diaz, recovered his freedom we have captured the kidnappers.’  The post First photos of four men arrested over abduction of footballer Luis Diaz’ father as they face charges including kidnapandtheft appeared first on Linda Ikeji Blog.

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