Paraguayan kidnappers free wealthy rancher

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ASUNCION, Paraguay (AP) — Paraguay says a band of guerrilla kidnappers has freed a wealthy rancher after three months in captivity.

Fidel Zavala was set free alive Sunday night, according to vice Interior Minister Carmelo Caballero, who says President Fernando Lugo plans a midnight news conference to provide details of his liberation.

State prosecutor Ruben Candia says that with Zavala in safe hands, the government will use all its force to capture every member of the so-called Paraguayan People’s Army and put them to justice so that citizens can relax again.

The Oct. 15 kidnapping has vexed Lugo’s government. It isn’t clear if Zavala’s family paid a $5 million ransom demand, but they did donate 30 cows to several poor communities at the kidnappers’ request.