R50m Bitcoin ransom demand denied by abducted businessman's family

11 July 2018 - 15:29 By Aron Hyman
Image: yourg / 123RF

The family of a kidnapped Cape Town businessman have denied receiving an e-mail demanding R50-million in Bitcoin in exchange for his release.

According to a spokesman for the family of Liyaqat Parker‚ Walid Brown‚ by Wednesday afternoon the family had yet to hear from anyone they could credibly deem to be the kidnappers.

Brown also confirmed that 64-year-old Parker‚ from Plattekloof‚ who has been missing since Monday‚ needed to take chronic medication.

“He does have health issues and he does take medication. It’s like any chronic medication‚ if he doesn’t take it there will be certain complications‚” he said.

“The family is waiting for the kidnappers to contact them. They have not received contact from anybody demanding anything.

“[There’s been] lots of information from people that have tips‚ they’ve had hundreds of calls but no credible information.”

The founder of the Foodprop Group‚ which owns the Foodworld chain of supermarkets‚ was kidnapped at gunpoint by five men in a double-cab bakkie as he was driving into the basement of his business premises in Parow.

The attackers forced the security guard into a toilet and took his cellphone at gunpoint before driving away.

Parker is also a board member of Al Amien Foods and a non-executive director of Brimstone Investment Corporation.

Police spokesman Captain FC van Wyk said the case was “highly sensitive” and was being investigated by provincial detectives.

“Please bear with us as we cannot divulge details of the investigation that has yet to be presented before a court of law‚” said Van Wyk.