Missing American in Benin lured on internet

2012-05-30 17:37

Abuja - A US citizen has been kidnapped in Benin, the US embassy in Nigeria said on Wednesday, and sources said the American had been lured to the West African country by criminals met on the internet.

A security source said the man had travelled to the country to meet a group of people from Benin and neighbouring Nigeria.

He was abducted and then forced to contact his family to ask for a ransom payment, the source in Benin said.

There were no apparent links to Islamist groups or pirates which operate in the region, the source said.

"A US citizen was recently kidnapped in Benin. The US Embassy in Cotonou [Benin's economic capital] has no reason to believe that other US citizens or interests are at risk," said a notice posted on the website of the embassy in Nigeria, which acts as a US regional diplomatic hub.

"The investigation is ongoing, and there are no further details at this time," it said.

The embassy did not give any further details and Benin authorities refused to comment. A diplomatic source said the American was seized last week after being lured to the country.

Kidnappings of foreigners are rare in Benin, a French-speaking country of about 9 million people, but there have been several abductions in Nigeria this year.

There have been a number of cases of foreigners being kidnapped in West Africa after making contacts on the internet over the past two years.

  • Mandy Casey - 2012-05-30 18:03

    Very old trick, make promises of big money. Lure into country to collect it , but then you actually get kidnapped and held for ransom. Can't believe people are still falling for this. Greed is all I can say.

  • Gerda Malherbe - 2012-05-30 19:16

    Don't these naive Americans know never to trust a Nigerian??

      victor.ejike.5 - 2012-05-31 10:17

      Obiviously you are ignorant continuing in the prejudice against nigerians and for the record in he was kidnapped in benin not nigeria

  • AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-05-30 21:07

    Sure it is GREED, But these scumbags are soo unbelievable smooth and convincing, they have done these tricks soo many times, that they have become master confidence tricksters. Be on your guard, as the next victim could be YOU !!!!

  • lloyd.tandi - 2012-05-30 21:43

    The old trick 419.

  • Agbai - 2012-05-31 11:01

    The victims are as guilty as the tricksters. When will people ever learn!!!

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