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Last Updated: Thursday, 17 February, 2005, 10:15 GMT
Body found in Paraguay kidnapping
Cecilia Cubas, daughter of former Paraguayan President Raul Cubas, in an undated photo
Six people were arrested over the kidnapping of Ms Cubas
Officials in Paraguay searching for the kidnapped daughter of ex-President Raul Cubas say they are virtually certain they have found her body.

The body thought to be that of Cecilia Cubas, 32, was found in an underground chamber at a house near Asuncion.

"It's the worst thing that could have happened," Interior Minister Nelson Moras told the Reuters news agency.

Ms Cubas was seized by gunmen in September, sparking a national outcry and massive effort to find her alive.

She was abducted near her home on 21 September in a paramilitary-style operation.

Her father, a businessman who was briefly president at the end of the 1990s, is reported to have paid an $800,000 ransom for her return, only to have the alleged kidnappers break off contact.

A prosecutor, Arnaldo Guizzio, said the remains matched the missing woman's medical records.

Her parents and the current President, Nicanor Duarte Frutos, have gone to the house where the body was found.


Six people have been arrested in connection with the kidnap.

Paraguayan prosecutors say one of them was in contact with a senior official in Colombia's main leftist rebel group, the Farc.

Osmar Martinez was allegedly in contact with the Farc's former international relations chief, Rodrigo Granda.

Mr Granda was captured in Venezuelan territory in December, sparking a diplomatic crisis between Colombia and Venezuela.

The Farc rebels have kidnapped hundreds of people in Colombia but are not thought to have carried out abductions abroad.

Mr Martinez has issued a statement denying involvement in the kidnapping.

Paraguayans are deeply concerned about what appears to be a rising trend towards kidnappings.

President Duarte sacked his interior minister and police chief in October when the 10-year-old son of a businessman was kidnapped and killed.

Paraguay abductions spark sacking
14 Oct 04 |  Americas
Country profile: Paraguay
04 Feb 05 |  Country profiles
Timeline: Paraguay
30 Dec 04 |  Country profiles


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