Wife ar­rested af­ter cou­ple 'kid­napped busi­ness­men, forced them to lis­ten to loud mu­sic in coffins for MONTHS… and cut off US vic­tim’s fin­ger'

Costa del Sol News - - FRONT PAGE -

A HUS­BAND and wife are ac­cused of kid­nap­ping wealthy busi­ness­men and lock­ing them in coffins with mu­sic blar­ing be­side their heads.

The mar­ried cou­ple allegedly tar­geted for­eign in­vestors and pen­sion­ers, keep­ing them in cas­kets for months on end.

Span­ish-born Is­abel Mazarro Gomez de San­ti­ago and her hus­band Raul Julio Es­co­bar Poblete are ac­cused of be­ing part of a dangerous gang that operated in Mex­ico.

The 40-year-old Mazarro Gomez de San­ti­ago has now been ar­rested in the As­turias re­gion of north­west­ern Spain in con­nec­tion with the chill­ing ex­tor­tion racket.

She and her hus­band are ac­cused of keep­ing their vic­tims hostage un­til their fam­i­lies agreed to pay a ran­som, play­ing loud mu­sic to make their hostages' cap­tiv­ity even worse. Poblete, orig­i­nally from Chile, allegedly posed as an en­tre­pre­neur to tar­get vic­tims. Us­ing the fake name Ra­mon Al­berto Guerra Va­len­cia, he was seized in May while allegedly col­lect­ing a ran­som in Mex­ico

One of the cou­ple's al­leged vic­tims was hote­lier Car­los Xavier Araiza Tor­res, who was held cap­tive for 10 months.

He says that much of that time he was forced to re­main in a wooden cof­fin while the gang kept mu­sic play­ing 24 hours a day.

The pair also re­port­edly cut a fin­ger off an el­derly Amer­i­can woman they held for two and a half months.

Ac­cord­ing to El Pais, Nancy Michell Ken­dall, was held cap­tive un­til Poblete was ar­rested by the Mex­i­can au­thor­i­ties and he made a phone call from cus­tody en­sur­ing her re­lease.

An­other re­port, in Mex­ico News Daily, says a Mex­i­can po­lice file lists the contents of the pack­age that Es­co­bar Poblete paid a taxi driver 500 pe­sos to de­liver to the vic­tim’s hus­band at the Nir­vana Ho­tel, in the city of San Miguel de Al­lende, Gua­na­ju­ato.

In­side were four doc­u­ment, two writ­ten in Span­ish, one in French and one with im­ages of the vic­tim as well as a USB flash drive, a blue box and a small jar which con- tained the vic­tim's sev­ered lit­tle fin­ger.

The Mex­i­can au­thor­i­ties put in a re­quest to the Span­ish Civil Guard to ar­rest Gomez de San­ti­ago, who they sus­pected had fled the coun­try.

Span­ish po­lice tracked her from the east­ern re­gion of Ali­cante across the coun­try be­fore even­tu­ally ar­rest­ing her.

It is be­lieved that Poblete was once part of a Marx­ist ter­ror­ist or­gan­i­sa­tion who tried to over­throw Chilean dic­ta­tor Au­gusto Pinochet.

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