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Kidnapped Brazilian Coffee Exporter Freed After $630,000 Ransom Paid

March 8, 1994

SAO PAULO, Brazil (AP) _ One of Brazil’s biggest coffee exporters was released unharmed following 2 months in captivity after his family paid a $630,000 ransom.

Sao Paulo State officials said Decio Moraes Ribeiro, 59, was freed Sunday night, a day after his son dropped off the money in a sugar cane field 170 miles northwest of Sao Paulo.

Ribeiro was kidnapped Dec. 20 near Espirito Santo Pinhal, 120 miles from Sao Paulo, as he headed to one of his 40 coffee plantations. He was forced to stop his car by four armed assailants, who remain at large.

In June 1991, Ribeiro’s 2-year-old granddaughter, Bruna, was kidnapped and released four days later after a ransom of $800,000 was paid.