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Kidnappers Release 4-Year-Old Son Of Soccer Player

September 11, 1993 GMT

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) _ The kidnapped son of a soccer star was set free by his captors Friday, hours after he was seized by two men on motorcycles while playing in front of his Medellin home.

In a country where kidnapping has become commonplace, the abduction Thursday of Luis Fernando Herrera, son of a soccer player of the same name, touched off a national outcry.

Government officials, soccer players and ordinary citizens appeared on television to plea for the boy’s freedom.

The child was left in a church in eastern Medellin. Police said the arrest of two accomplices late Thursday aborted the kidnappers’ plan to demand a ransom.

The elder Herrera returned to Colombia from Argentina on Monday following his team’s 5-0 rout over Argentina on Sunday. The victory earned Colombia a place in the 1994 World Cup finals.

In Colombia last year, there were 1,320 reported abductions, with the culprits ranging from drug traffickers and leftist rebels to common criminals.