A kidnapped German Shepherd has been returned to its elderly owners in Bogota, days after a police sting operation thwarted payment of a $350,000 ransom.
Capt. Wilfredo Vasquez, spokesman for the police's elite "Gaula" anti-kidnapping unit, said the dog's owners refused to discuss the case, but described them as a wealthy, retired couple. "They lived alone and loved the dog like it was a child," said Vasquez.
The four-year-old purebred was taken hostage on Sept. 18, when kidnappers broke into the couple's house, subdued the dog with a tranquilizer and lugged it away in a bag, Vasquez said.
Hours later, the captors called the couple to tell them that Aldo would be mutilated unless they forked over $350,000. They also received photos of the dog bound in chains, along with a tape recording of the warning, "This is how your dog cries at night."
When the couple went to pay part of the ransom at a rendezvous point, six undercover agents — trained to rescue people in Colombia, one of the world's kidnapping capitals — were lying in wait.
A shootout erupted after the exchange took place, wounding one of the agents and leading to the capture of two of the dog's kidnappers. Aldo was dropped off at the vet's office later the same day, showing signs of starvation, Vasquez said.
Tags: Dog | Kidnapped | Rescued | Ransom