"The victim is safe and sound and in good health," the Prosecutor's Office stated and informed that four Panamanians and one Venezuelan are in custody for their alleged link to the case.
The kidnapping attempt occurred while the former military was heading to his farm in the La Mitra de La Chorrera community in West Panama Province. Local outlets report that the person who was with him called for help when the suspects intercepted the vehicle.
The police arrived on the scene in time to arrest the individuals and seized the car that was allegedly going to be used to perpetrate the crime.
#Panama | The Public Prosecutor's Office identified 20 victims and opened 18 criminal cases connected to the child sex abuses committed in public shelters.https://t.co/AXHOMsTc9D
Panama's Special Forces units raided homes in the area and mobilized dozens of patrols and tracking dogs.
"We will determine who is behind this crime and if they knew who the target was," Attorney and Forensic Investigator David Villarreal said.
The incident occurred just days after the Prosecutor's Office began investigating the systematic sexual abuse of dozens of minors in state-ruled shelters.
"We hope that the government does not put aside the sexual abuse investigation to prioritize the inquiry into the kidnapping of the President's brother," lawyer Alfonso Fraguela said.
The United States invaded Panama on this day in 1989. Thousands of people were killed to protect U.S. interests. The military incursion, involving 27,684 U.S. troops and over 300 aircraft, was sold to the public as "defending democracy." pic.twitter.com/tk7ubAURI9