Nov 12, 2011, 2:57 AM EST
Photo via Kathe Vilera
Wilson Ramos, following his rescue this evening.
Updated at 11:35 p.m.
Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos was rescued by Venezuelan police this evening in a mountainous area west of his hometown and is returning to his house where elated family members and friends await his arrival.
The 24-year-old was found “safe and sound,” according to Venezuelan justice minister Tareck El Aissami, roughly 51 hours after he was abducted by four armed men outside his home near Valencia.
Family members spoke on the phone with Ramos, who told them he was “healthy and well,” according to close family friend Marfa Mata.
“The news from Venezuela tonight is reassuring,” Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said in a statement released by the club. “Though details are limited and we have not yet talked directly with Wilson, we are thrilled with reports that he has been rescued and is being safely returned to his family. We greatly appreciate all the prayers and thoughts of all who have joined us in wishing for this conclusion to what has been a nightmarish 48 hours. We are eager to see Wilson and let him know just how many all over the world have been waiting for this news.”
It’s not yet known how authorities located Ramos or how the rescue operation was performed, but the Venezuelan government reported three men in custody, including one who is a Colombian citizen linked
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