Criminals’ attempt to kidnap Peruvian miners quashed

Pataz Unified Command in La Libertad, Peru. (Image by Comando Unificado Pataz, Facebook.)

The Pataz Unified Command, whose members hail from the National Armed Forces and the National Police, detained three men in their mid-to-late twenties, who attempted to kidnap a group of miners in the La Libertad region, northwestern Peru.

According to official information made public by state news agency Andina, the action took place in an area called La Zeta after the miners made an emergency call from their camp saying that the criminals beat them during the kidnap attempt. Their ultimate goal was to build a tunnel between two mines to operate illegally. 

As the Unified Command chased the kidnappers, military patrols surveilled the surrounding areas.

Once apprehended, the detainees surrendered different types of ammunition and two balaclavas. They were presented before the Hualanga police station and the National Prosecutor’s Office.

The gold-rich Pataz province has been in a state of emergency since December 2023, when nine people died and 15 were injured after a group of armed men raided the Poderosa mine facilities.

Military and police officers have joined forces to maintain internal order and counteract illegal mining and related crimes, at a time when the Peruvian parliament has repealed the first provision of legislative decree 1607 that gave the police special powers to detain miners who are not registered in the Comprehensive Mining Formalization Registry (Reinfo) and who are illegally transporting weapons and explosives.