Man kidnapped and attacked by gang


A Scottish man who travelled to the Algarve on October 5 was allegedly kidnapped and mutilated by a group of British men and went missing for 13 days before being found by a Portuguese resident in Alfontes near Boliqueime.

The man, who was walking through the streets of Alfontes on Monday, October 18, told the passer-by that he had been the victim of an accident and refused to give any further explanations.

The INEM medical emergency teams were called and the victim was transported to Faro Hospital where he received medical assistance.

A spokesman from Faro Hospital told the Algarve Resident: “The 26-year-old man was given treatment to his injuries and then transferred to Hospital de São José in Lisbon for plastic surgery which we were unable to perform here at Faro hospital. He lacked one ear, a finger and a toe.”

The Algarve Resident contacted Hospital de São José who said they did not have permission to provide information about the clinical condition of the patient.

According to reports in the Portuguese press this week, the victim had been involved in drug trafficking with one of his kidnappers and owed him around 10,000 Euros.

Portuguese newspaper Correio da Manhã (CM) also reported that the man had already been threatened by the group when they raided his residence in Manchester, UK.

On October 5, he was attracted to the Algarve after he was allegedly promised by a member of the group, that if he helped in a cannabis plantation he could recoup part of the debt.

All four suspects were arrested by the PJ police after the wife of the victim contacted the police in the UK about his disappearance and dealings with the group and an investigation began in Portugal.

According to CM, two days after the kidnap, the wife of the victim received a phone call from one of the kidnappers. The PJ police identified the call as having been made from a telephone booth near Forum Montijo shopping centre, south of Lisbon.

The group was living in the Algarve and the passage through Montijo on October 7 was allegedly related to the fact that one of the suspects had a home in the area.

The victim’s wife recognised the voice of the kidnapper who reportedly said that her husband was inside a cage in the woods and that they had broken his arms, legs, feet, ankles and ribs.

He finished his telephone call by saying that he would save her husband’s life and send him back home if she did not alert the police, otherwise the victim would be executed.

The four kidnappers were previously suspected of having murdered the victim after the PJ police found a burned out Mercedes with a British licence plate in a ravine near the dam of Santa Clara in the Alentejo on October 13.

A spokesman from the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) in the UK told the Algarve Resident this week: “SOCA was involved in the case as an international liaison connector between the UK forces and the Portuguese PJ police.”

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the Northern Constabulary of Scotland told the Algarve Resident: “Following a report of a high risk missing person made to Police at Wick which concerned the disappearance of a 26-year-old local man who had travelled to Portugal, Northern Constabulary instigated a joint operation (Operation Aniseed) in conjunction with the PJ police in Portugal with the assistance of the UK Serious Organised Crime Agency.

“This operation culminated in the arrest of four UK nationals on serious criminal charges in Portugal where court appearances are expected. Investigation continues in tandem with the Portuguese authorities. The man has been recovered safely by officers in Portugal. His details are not being issued at this time.”

A spokesman from the British Embassy in Portugal told the Algarve Resident: “We are aware of the case but have not been called upon to provide any assistance to the citizen.  We are, however, ready at any time to help the British citizen with the case if required.”

The Algarve Resident contacted the PJ police but no one was available to make a statement about the case.

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