CNP

Dramatic hydraulic platform arrest in Marbella in connection with Torremolinos kidnapping

One of the suspects began to climb down the outside of an apartment block from the fifth floor after the police broke down the door, but they captured him with the help of the fire brigade

JUAN CANO / ÁLVARO FRÍAS Malaga

“Don’t move, OK? Just stay quiet. Don’t move”. There was something surreal about the scene. Two plain-clothes police officers going up on a fire brigade hydraulic platform, which is usually used for rescues, to arrest a man who had tried to escape by climbing down the outside of a building.

It happened yesterday, Thursday 19 May, in Marbella. Just before midday, the police Drugs and Organised Crime unit (Udyco) went to a property where they suspected kidnappers were hiding out.

After breaking down the door, the officers caught two of the suspects, but a third ran to the balcony of the fifth-floor apartment and began to climb down the outside of the block, Spider-Man style.

The officers reacted fast. They immediately called the Marbella fire brigade, who sent a hydraulic platform. Revolvers in hand, the police used it to reach the third floor of the building, which is where the suspect had come to a halt. Following their orders, he lay face-down on the floor of the balcony and, within seconds, they had put handcuffs on him to immobilise him.

Those arrested, all aged between 30 and 40, are believed to be part of a gang of kidnappers involved in drug trafficking. A European search and arrest warrant has been issued against one of them by the Belgian authorities in connection with an offence against public health.

The Udyco squad had been looking for them as members of a gang of kidnappers who mistakenly seized a foreign man in Torremolinos in January. According to the investigation the victim, who was from North Africa, was grabbed in the street in El Pinillo district, forced into a car and then released soon afterwards near a filling station when his kidnappers realised he wasn’t who they were looking for. They are said to bear a strong physical resemblance.

When the police searched the apartment where they found the gang members, they discovered a revolver which turned out to be the one used in the incident in Torremolinos, as well as 30,000 euros in cash, three kilos of marijuana, 100 grammes of hashish, four frequency inhibitors, two satellite telephones, two vehicles and a designer watch.