China brings kidnap suspect home from Venezuela

BEIJING (AP) - Chinese police have brought a major kidnapping suspect back to China from Venezuela.

The Ministry of Public Security said Xi Mouwei is suspected of heading a criminal gang that had been carrying out kidnappings, robberies and extortion targeting Chinese citizens in Venezuela since 2010. It said the gang demanded ransoms of more than US$100,000 (S$120,000).

He arrived in Beijing on Thursday.

The statement said a team from the ministry caught Xi on Feb 1 with the help of the Venezuelan police and army. It said police in southern Guangdong province also caught two suspected accomplices.

China is keen to be seen as being capable of protecting its citizens abroad and punishing those who commit violent crimes overseas.