By Aimen Eljali.
Tripoli, 8 October 2013:
An incident that happened yesterday could only be described as a Hollywood movie.
I was sitting on . . .[restrict]a street in Tripoli when an elderly man stopped his car and went into a nearby pharmacy, leaving his wife and his teenage daughter in the vehicle. All of a sudden another car, a Mercedes with tinted glass, stopped and parked behind that of the elderly man. Soon after, a third car, a Toyota, came and parked in front it. Everything seemed normal; nothing appeared out of place.
Shortly afterwards, a taxi pulled up and man, afterwards discovered to be an Egyptian, got out and went into the pharmacy. He stood by listening to the conversation between the elderly man and the pharmacist. He then made a signal. Two young men in army uniform, one of them bearded, got out of the Mercedes, while three men wearing SSC uniforms got out of the Toyota. They went into the pharmacy, approached the elderly man and introduced themselves as security members from Mitiga, telling him he was wanted but did not give any reason.
They calmly took him to the Toyota and put him in it. It seemed a normal arrest. The man’s wife and daughter watched in astonishment. Then another man headed for their car, got in and drove off with them inside. None of us thought for a second that it might have been a kidnapping. It seemed such a smooth ordinary arrest operation by security personal.
But a few hours later, the elderly man came back and told his story.
It turned-out to be a very well orchestrated robbery.
He had been watched and followed as left the bank after withdrawing LD 450,000 which, he said, were donations for a cancer hospital.
The assailants had followed him until he stopped at the pharmacy. From there he was taken to an unknown location. His wife and daughter were taken elsewhere. His car was searched and the money found. Having taken it all, the thieves tookhen left the wife and daughter on the road. They called the other group who were with the elderly man. He was left near the end of the Airport Road. [/restrict]