FBI arrests man plotting to steal CA child for ransom - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

FBI arrests man plotting to steal CA child for ransom

(NBC) - A Southern California man is behind bars and facing charges for an alleged plot to kidnap a child. The man's supposed plan was to kidnap a wealthy family's child and hold him for ransom.

FBI agents say an accomplice foiled a scheme hatched by Cesar Ariel Zapata Landeros to run the child's mother off the road, snatch one of her two children and demand a $300,000 ransom.

Federal agents confirm Zapata is now jailed in connection with the case after being captured within a hundred yards of the gated community where the targeted family lives.

Zapata allegedly threatened to sever two of the child's fingers and send them to the family until his money demands were met.

Investigators say they couldn't ignore a plot to kidnap and possibly maim a child.

"It's certainly within the realm of possibility that these types of acts would be committed," said the FBI's Steve Martinez.

"Kidnappers will go through great lengths to show they're willing to follow-through on a threat and we would take that threat seriously," Martinez said.

The Bureau believes Zapata had prior knowledge of the intended victims.

Copyright 2010 NBC. All rights reserved.

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